My calling is a support role, a faithful truth-giving so that a growing relationship with God will be based upon knowledge of his ways.

The Purposes of God Fulfilled in the Blue Chairs

Sunday Scripture

Every Sunday morning I hunker down at a low table with the four and five year olds at my church. Everyone wants a blue chair, and there’s almost always a tussle about something, but eventually, we put the attendance stickers on the bulletin board and settle down to business.

There are crayons and scissors and always (always!) a snack, but central to all we do is a story from the Bible. Quite honestly, this part never goes as well as I’d like. Someone tips over backward in a chair. Someone else interrupts at a crucial point with an insight about a stuffed bunny named Thumper.  Often my delivery is not as kid-friendly as it should be.

We’re all unreliable as can be, and the curriculum has flaws that annoy me, but there is one element of this equation that carries the day and keeps me coming back week after week:

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven
and do not return there but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. ”  (Isaiah 55:10, 11)

I don’t claim to know what God’s purposes are in the life of each boy or girl I teach, but I know their parents well–and we talk. They ache to see their children embark upon a faith journey that is their very own. They are doing their part at home, and my calling is a support role, a faithful truth-giving so that a growing relationship with God will be based upon knowledge of his ways. While that may not happen this Sunday (or even the next), and while this process may not look exactly the way their parents or I expect, God’s Word will be open and at the center of that noisy little table.

There’s a slow watering that will come from the layer of snow covering my garden on this February day, and there’s a slow watering happening around that low table every week.

The seeds I plant in furrowed rows late in May will land in prepared ground.
And God’s fruitful purpose will be fulfilled where his Word is faithfully given–to our children, to our friends over coffee, and to a rascally bunch of four and five-year-olds sitting in their blue chairs.

That’s good news to this Sunday school teacher.

Sunday blessings,

michele signature[1]


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43 thoughts on “The Purposes of God Fulfilled in the Blue Chairs”

  1. This is a wonderful calling. I done this for almost 27 years with 2-4 year old’s, it can be hard but it’s wonderful when one of my kids come up and say Miss. Sherry do you remember me. Prayers to you and congratulations on your walk.

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  2. Michele, many seeds are sown in those little chairs, be they blue or yellow 🙂 May we all keep faithfully planting the seeds and pray for the Lord to water them into a full grown and vibrant faith.

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    1. Today it was those little alphabet crackers you can buy at WalMart. This crowd is enthralled with them, and that makes me happy!
      Next week it will be heart shaped cookies because my little cookie bakers are coming here to help me make them on Friday. Yay!

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  3. Good morning and hope your Sunday is great. 🙂 I do believe the words I’ve often heard that one will turn back to the Lord if they get lost or eventually hear and feel that tap on the shoulder from God. Your words of planting the seeds to grow describes the miracle beautifully. I did young children for a few years…and, I admit, they often taught me. 🙂

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  4. Michele, this is so beautiful!! Not only beautifully written but from a beautiful place in your servant’s heart. A beautiful reminder that God’s Word ALWAYS (just like that snack) feeds His children!!

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  5. I sometimes feel that my kids are not getting it – at Sunday School or when we do lessons at home – but then they surprise me at unexpected times reminding me about God’s love or a miracle Jesus did. Kids are truly blessings to work with and be around.

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  6. Thank you for being faithful in your calling!! We all have a part to play in nurturing the Word as it does its work in others, and I’m so thankful for the many Sunday School teachers and others who poured into my life when I was a child, and into the lives of my children. Now it’s my young adult children who are teaching 4- and 5-year-olds in Sunday School or leading children in worship and God is teaching them even as they teach the little ones.

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  7. My husband and I used to work in a children’s ministry and children’s church, and I remember those days of wondering if anything of value “stuck.” Sometimes I think of what it must have been like when Jesus preached to people on hillsides–men, women, and children. I’m sure there must have been mishaps and distractions. I’m so grateful for this promise that God’s Word doesn’t return void. We don’t see what’s going on under the soil, but we trust He is faithfully watering the seed sown.

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  8. Michele, I love the picture you paint here. I feel like I’m one of those littles in a blue chair! I get my water, sprout, sometimes blossom, sometimes wilt. But that consistent showing up in the garden–to be nurtured wherever I am that week…well, BLESS SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHERS!

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  9. Laughing about the tipped chairs. I was helping in the library today with 2nd graders, and they still fall out of their chairs too. I wonder what age that stops. 🙂 Those children are blessed to have you sharing God with them.

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  10. HI Michele, visiting from Worth beyond Rubies link-up. Great post, and great reminder that the words we say take root and grow. Also, a great caution to make sure those words are God-centred and word based. Loved it
    God bless
    Tracy

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  11. Bless you, Michele for having the courage and patience to teach 4 and 5 year-olds. 15 and 16-year olds, I had no trouble with, but it takes a special person like you to tend to the spiritual needs of kindergarteners! 🙂

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  12. I have a feeling those kids love you, Michele … and I KNOW their parents appreciate your loving input in those young minds every week. This makes me want to reach out to the teachers my girls had when they were that age and say thank you once again. 🙂

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  13. Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too!
    Come party with us at Over The Moon! Catapult your content Over The Moon! @marilyn_lesniak @EclecticRedBarn

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  14. This is beautiful, Michele. I teach older preschool once a month during the worship service. Which are kids about the same age you teach. We don’t have Sunday school. So all the kids classes are taught by volunteers once a month. And the adults’ Sunday school classes are our weekly lifegroups that meet at the church or in homes. I love here how you related Isaiah 55:10-11 to God’s Word not returning void or empty, but will produce growth. How amazing to participate as a seed-sower.

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  15. Great perspective. Sometimes it can be hard to remember that our job is to plant the seeds. Thanks for sharing at Encouraging Hearts & Home. Pinned.

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  16. Michele, I LOVE this post. It’s so easy to feel that our small acts of service aren’t really that valuable, isn’t it? Yet they are–because of God and His purposes, not because of ours. Thank you for your faithfulness in teaching those little ones, and thank you for your faithfulness in this writing space. I appreciate you.

    Thanks so much for joining the Grace at Home party! I’m featuring you this week.

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