The Buzz in the Air
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. ~Matthew 6: 19-21
This time of year, social media is filled with pictures of students dressed in their best holding a sign saying “First day of…”, signifying the first day of a new school year. As students head back to school new adventures begin. A new year means new classes, new teachers, new friends. For some, it means new schools as they transition to Jr. High or High School.
Thursday, my two oldest will start 1st and 4th grades and I will take them out for breakfast, take pictures of them holding signs which my wife will later post on social media with some meaningful comment. I, like most parents, spent time this week dropping off an extensive list of school supplies and meeting the teachers who will be responsible for the education of my children. This is not a new phenomenon, as my parents have pictures of me on my first day of school when I was growing up. They even have pictures of my first day in college, and when they helped move me into seminary.
There is a lot of hoopla surrounding a new school year; the preparations we make, the time we take to get school supplies, buy a new school outfit, set aside time to meet teachers, fill out all of the required paperwork, etc. I feel like it is really important to know who we are trusting with our children and their education, and that is why we go through all of the hoopla.
A couple of weeks ago, my family and I were on vacation and we visited another church. While there, we were welcomed by a very friendly greeter who showed us where we could take our children. We signed our children in and off they went to church school. As a first-time visitor, we filled out the required first-time visitor information, but as my children went to church school, I had no idea who was teaching them or what they were going to be taught. As a church, I assumed everything was going to be ok, and it was. But it made me wonder why we don’t make a bigger deal of who is teaching our children about who God is? Why do we assume the curriculum that is being used is Biblically sound? At the end of our experience at the church, which again was a good experience, I had no idea what the name of my kids' teachers were or how long they had been teaching. I got a 4th and 1st-grade interpretation of what they learned about.
Jesus tells us in the gospel of Matthew not to store up our treasures on earth but rather in heaven, but we do. Learning math, science, and how to read is really important and the emphasis that we put into the first day of school is probably worth it. But for some reason, we don’t treat our children’s church school experience on the same level as regular school. But shouldn’t we?
What if we took a vested interest in what our children are learning at church? What if we took the time to meet the teachers; to support them in their calling and the work that they do? What if we spent just a fraction of the money we spent sending our kids back to school on sending our children to church school and events?
As we head into the fall and get settled back into the routine of school, I’m encouraging you to take the time to meet those who are teaching the future of the church. Let’s make it a priority to care about what is going on in the area of children and youth, and not just say we care.