3 Benefits to Attending Sunday School

While many of us find ourselves going to church on a weekly basis, there is an entire group of church goers who do not enjoy the benefits and blessings of Sunday School. Those who do not attend Sunday School are not less spiritual or immature believers, but they are allowing themselves to miss out on a potent aspect the church has available to help its members mature in Christ. You may be reading this article and you do not attend Sunday School. You may have never attended, stopped attending, attend sporadically, or go every week. Whatever your relationship with Sunday School I want to share with you three benefits of attending Sunday School on a weekly basis. I share these not to condemn or judge, but to offer strength and encouragement in your faith journey. 

1.  Gain Encouragement

Let’s be honest with ourselves and one another. Life is hard. Life is hard and it seems like the point in history we are living in is especially difficult. The troubles and trials are difficult for even the most spiritual, godly, and talented of people, not to mention the rest of us. Every week we have to deal with the task of keeping it together in the midst of chaos, making the right decisions concerning our children, providing for our families, fighting temptation, dealing with our sinful failures, and then battling the grief and shame that come with that failure. Depression, anxiety, and complacency loom large for many of us. We need a place to come to know that we are not alone. The grief we feel is shared by many. The sorrow we battle is not isolated. The sin which so easily entangles us is entrapping others. The questions we have of how to live this life for Jesus when it seems so impossible are being asked by more than just us. 

Sunday School offers a place a to gain encouragement to know you are not alone, you are not on an island, the world is not only on your shoulders. Writing to the church at Rome, the apostle Paul says, “that I may by encouraged together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me” (Rom. 1:12). Paul was away from the Roman believers and he knew that if they could get to see each other they would encourage one another in life and in the faith. After a week of living, striving, and serving in this sin stained world, we need a place where we can come together and be encouraged; encouraged in the word, encouraged in life, and encouraged through others. Sunday School offers a place where such encouragement can take place. 

2.  Strengthen Relationships

One of the difficult tasks of living as a believer is having intimate, life-giving relationships with other believers as we walk through this journey of faith. We have several types and levels of relationships in our lives. We have relationships with our immediate family (spouse, parents, and children). We have relationships with extended family (aunts, uncles, and cousins). We also have relationships with friends (some close and some not so close) and neighbors. We also have relationships with coworkers. Then there are those we know as acquaintances. In each of these types of relationships we have varying levels of intimacy which help define the relationship. The issue that many believers have is we have a hard time being truly open and honest with other believers, because in our fallenness we think we are the worst of the people we know. There are no other Christ followers who deal with the issues we deal with and who struggle with the concerns we struggle with, or who fail so miserably with sin as us. One of the tools of the Devil is to make us feel that we are on a spiritual island that we can never get off. If we ever were to get off, no one would allow us to come share their island. We are in desperate need of genuine intimate relationships. I am not talking about Facebook and Instafriends, I am talking about real, down in the dirt, fight all night, walk a thousand miles with you, help you conquer the most heinous sin in your life relationship. 

Sunday School is a place where you can plant, cultivate, and harvest this type of relationship. In Sunday School you hear people share prayer requests and realize their life is not as perfect as their social media accounts portray. In Sunday School you hear people’s experience in applying, misapplying, and not applying scripture in their lives and you recognize you are not the only one who struggles. When Paul talks about bearing one another’s burdens (Gal. 6:2) he is not expecting our burden bearing to be done in a vacuum, but in the context of vibrant godly relationships. As we share our life experiences, we can begin to develop these deep meaningful relationships with others and these relationships not only strengthen us, they strengthen others, and they strengthen the church. Sunday School offers a place for godly, Christ-honoring relationships to flourish. 

3.  Equipped for Life

The third reason to value Sunday school and make it a priority in your life is that Sunday School offers another, even more in-depth opportunity to study the Bible and be equipped for life. While attending the worship service of the church is healthy, beneficial, and encouraging, Sunday School provides a means to be able to dig into the meat of the word and pull out all of the hidden gems tucked away in God’s holy word. As the word of God is discussed, you can learn the historical intricacies of the text and context, how others have dealt with the passage, and how you can apply the passage to your life. Sunday School offers an opportunity to learn God’s word on multiple levels of thinking, feeling, and doing, helping us to grow in our understanding of God’s word, value God’s word, and appropriately apply God’s word to our lives. If you want to be equipped to live for and honor Christ in this world, I highly encourage you to attend and be a part of Sunday School. 

Adapted from FBCDesoto.com