Why Invite Others To Sunday School?
By Rodney L. Pry
One of the problems that churches often find when they try to hold a Sunday school enlargement campaign is that even after they have obtained a good program and have done lots of hard work and planning, it still doesn’t work because the members of the church and Sunday school don’t really get involved and don’t do any witnessing or invite anyone to attend.
The key is “motivation.” Will the members of your church and Sunday school be motivated to really get involved and to go and witness to their friends?
The best motivation comes by reminding your members that sharing their love for Jesus Christ and the Sunday school is not only a privilege but an expected part of a Christian’s life. Dr. Elmer Towns, the well known Sunday school growth expert, has put it this way, “The purpose of the Sunday school is the Great Commission. ‘Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them I the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you…’ (Matthew 28:19-20a). A Sunday school campaign should organize people to carry out the Great Commission.” (Towns’ Sunday School Encyclopedia; Tyndale House; 1993)
Clearly the Great Commission is not just aimed at pastors and missionaries. Each of us, individually and collectively, is expected to carry out its directives to preach, teach and win the lost. God expects the Sunday school to reach the lost and he expects Sunday school teachers and leaders to motivate individual members to reach their friends and neighbors with the goal of getting them into Sunday school, where they can hear the Word of God.
First and foremost, we must be sure that the members of our Sunday school are themselves committed to Jesus Christ, as personal Lord and Savior, and to His Word, the Bible, as their personal “handbook for life.” Second, they must have a deep love and concern for the needs of their fellowman, both their physical needs and their spiritual needs, and have a desire to be used by God as a vehicle of His love to the world around them. And finally, they must see the necessity for each person to be a part of the Sunday school, where people of all ages can learn more about God, His Word and His will for their lives.
Have you ever noticed how eager a person is to share some item of good news? When we have found something good and exciting, we want to share it with our friends, neighbors and family. But, what if something isn’t very important to us? It probably won’t even be mentioned. And that is how it is with witnessing about Jesus Christ and the Sunday school. If these things are really important to us, we will want to share the good news about what we have found. But, if Jesus Christ, the Bible and Sunday school really are not a priority in a person’s life, they probably won’t do much to tell others about them.
What this all means is that spiritual growth and renewal must always be a part of an enlargement effort or precede it. As you plan an enlargement campaign or other growth effort for your Sunday school, be sure to do all that you can to promote the importance of spiritual renewal. Urge your pastor to speak on the subject for several weeks before you start your campaign. Ask families to prepare for the campaign by making a commitment to have a time of daily devotions and prayer. Urge members to be a part of midweek prayer and Bible study groups. Plan a week or weekend of special revival or spiritual renewal services. These and other ideas can help promote spiritual growth and increase the number of persons who will be willing to make a real commitment to your enlargement effort as they witness and extend invitations to others.