Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Stand Up Stand Up For Jesus"1 (Lyrics)
Throughout my time in the church, I spent most of my service in children's ministries. I cuddled the babies, sang to 3-year-olds, and taught Bible lessons in Sunday school and children's church. I remember teaching the words and movements to "Deep and wide" and "Zaccheus was a wee little man". I can recall the stories that I told to the kids using flannel boards with little flannel-backed figures. I remember the giggles that I got as I passed out treats, and I can still see little heads bowed as we prayed. Sometimes, I felt well prepared with visuals to display the great stories of David and Goliath or Jonah and the great fish, but sometimes, I had barely made it to church with my own car full of kids. I'm sure that my harried appearance was apparent even to the youngest of them.
Very seldom did I ever know what lasting effect my teaching might have had, and sometimes, I was discouraged about it. But God assures us that He still has a plan, so I kept on. I remember reading the story of a missionary family who went for years without a single convert, but at great price to themselves, they continued through their trials. They claimed God's promise:
Isaiah 55:11 – So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. (NIV)
As I checked out Facebook one morning, I noticed that I had a friend request. Since I can use all the friends I can get, I clicked and found that a woman named Susan wanted to be my friend. I remembered her as a shy little girl from a great family of the church. She was very well behaved and much quieter than her fellow students. The next day, I was delighted to get the sweetest message from her. She caught me up on her parents and a bit of her own life, but then, she told me something that blesses me even now as I write this. She said that she accepted the Lord as her Saviour one Sunday morning in my Sunday school class, as I asked the children to bow their heads and pray. I wondered briefly if it was one of my organized days or one of my disheveled days. But right out of the silence, I faintly heard the applause of angels — not for me — but for this one who came to the Lord. On that morning, I knew that God's Word never comes back without doing what it was sent to do. It was definitely worth those harried days, with those rowdy kids hiding under the table as I gave my lesson!
Just remember the Lord's promise when you feel discouraged about serving Him.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, for the blessing of serving, and thank You for sending ones to share Your impact in their lives at just the right time. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
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Thanks, Jeanie, for sharing this inspiring story.
What a blessing, Jeanie. Thanks for sharing it.
Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings.
Beautiful story and great reminder to us all in Children’s Ministry, Jeanie. Thanks and blessings!
Jeanie, this superb devotional is spot on. Let me guess, you experienced the ethos of the 1950’s?
Your story brought tears to my eyes.
May God bless you with many more!
Little things, even unplanned, can make a BIG difference! Thanks for your faithfulness!
When so many of the ones I taught seem to drift away as young adults I often wonder if I really had any impact.
Thank you, Jeanie.
Very good and encouraging devotion.
I really enjoyed your devotional writing Jeanie, and blessings for the work you did over the years teaching Sunday school to all those children and more blessings for the writings you now contribute to the Devotional program.
‘A star in your crown’…….’a new name in glory’……….’well done faithful servant’!
Thanks for sharing this beautiful story. You should listen to Ray Boltz’s great song, “Thank You for Giving to the Lord”.
Oh my goodness Jeanie, how well you expressed the thoughts of me and countless other Sunday School teachers who have wondered what in the world their efforts wrought! Thank you for writing and for the wonderful story about Susan.
Hi there! We’re writing from NH. You are a fairly new writer for PresbyCan Daily and we just wanted to let you know we’ve really loved all your writings so far and also your style. We’re in our late eighty’s so have wonderful happy memories of all the Old Testament stories presented with the flannel graph by our Sunday school teachers.
Keep up the good work. God bless.
Jeanie, what a wonderful reminder of our Lord’s work in sincere hearts who are receptive to His Word and the message of His love, no matter what age they are or how well the message is presented by one He has appointed to speak it. I also recall being a children’s worker in church for many years with the privilege of getting to introduce bible stories to precious little ones for the first time. God bless you for your faithfulness and praise God for showing you how His Word took root. Isn’t He wonderful!!
Good morning, Jeanie,
You write very powerful devotionals and I am sure you offered very good lessons during your time in children’s ministries. I am sure many people are glad that you continued even though you were not sure you were making a difference. It is wonderful that after many years, you did hear from one of the children you made a difference to.
God has a plan for what He asks us to do and I am sure you have encouraged others today to continue even when they don’t know they might be making a difference to someone they interact with.
Thank you for sharing your experiences and thoughts. You are still making a difference. Blessings.
I remember being a young Sunday School teacher and feeling very discouraged, and saying how the children never remember anything I tell them so what good was I doing! And the advice I got back: “sometimes they just need to remember that you were there.”
“Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever.”
Thank you for sharing this lovely meditation and for the powerful reminder that God’s word does not return empty!
Good morning and your devotional reminded me of my earlier days teaching. What a thrill it is when someone says to the invitation.
I have done Sunday School and youth and Kids Camp. Thursday always got me excited because was the salvation message that for the day. I was truly blessed as I did the lesson as God gave in a dream sometime before I woke up that morning. So as each group came to my room, God moved. We had a little over 120 children that week for camp and there were 62 First Time certificates handed out as children came forward, that had never asked Jesus. One boy was a church goer with his family. His aunt told me the next day he told her he thought Jesus was in his heart because he went to Sunday School. So he asked Jesus in. I am thrilled that he is now a minister and married. GOD is so good!! Have blessed day and God bless you!
I have a son who is developmentally challenged. He grew up being taken to church every Sunday. As he grew, he became able to read and participate in social activities, particularly Sunday school. He had a wonderful teacher who accepted his limited abilities. One of her teaching tools was memorizing passages of scripture. My son is now in his 50’s and lives in a group home with individuals with the same disabilities as he has. Recently, when he was home with me for the weekend, I told him that I was trying to memorize important passages of scripture. As I began to recite to him what I was learning, I began with Galations 5:22-23, “But the fruit of the spirit is …. and self-control”. Mom, he said, you forgot “patience”. Needless to say, I was amazed!
The point of my story is, like you mention in your devotional, you never know what God can do through you. Thank you so much for your message. Isn’t He wonderful?!
Blessings on you,
Thank you for sharing your story “Serving with Confidence” . What a wonderful treasured story.