Today is National Sunday School Teachers Day, so in honor of this I will tell you about several that influenced me.
Not surprisingly, they are all from Owasso, not that the ones that came after them were bad, they just couldn’t really hold a candle to those that came before them.
Let’s get started, first up, Caroline Hall, this amazing woman realized she had a bonafide nerd in her classroom. She worked at the Baptist Book Store in Tulsa, she would bring me books on all sorts of topics. She taught me why Freewill Baptists believe the way they do, she brought me books not only regarding our denomination, but others, and other religions. She knew how to get through to the nerd in me, she was amazing and after all of these years I still remember her fondly and remember the things she taught me.
I will also say this, she gave me my first piece of OU swag, which I still have to this day. She was also the first to come to my house after my son, Michael, passed away.
Next up, Grace Wimberly, this woman was incredible, I remember the first day of the new year of Sunday school she stood in front of the class and said this is the same stuff we learn about year after year. I have to teach from the lesson plan, but we can get through that in about 5 minutes. What do you all really want to learn about? My hand shot up so fast it would have made your head spin. My bestie Tammi sighed in exasperation, she new that the nerd in me was coming out full force. I said Revelation, I want to learn about everything in that book. She said ok, and she accepted the challenge, she made charts, little books for all of us, hand made, this was the days before computers were ubiquitous, handmade pie charts, graphs and the book was put together by her and her husband Al. I’ll never forget how she made me feel, like what I wanted to learn was more important than a cookie cutter lesson, created by people who didn’t know us. She was caring, she was straight to the point, said what she thought and meant what she said. I learned asking questions and doing research was the way for me to delve deeper into the Bible.
Ed and Fleeta Sunday, they taught as a couple to young 20 somethings. Fleeta said something one Sunday that really hit home for me. She said that with everyone concerned about what was on television that they forget about what they are consuming when they read. Me being a huge reader, well that hit home, because at that time I would literally read anything. That is not always a good thing, I learned to fill my mind with things that would propel me closer to God and also expand my capacity for learning. This includes fiction, I do love fiction, but I am picky about what I read.
Thank you to these Sunday School teachers that helped form who I am today. You gave me the resources to understand why I should have the courage of my convictions. You taught me to question, and to search out the answers to my questions. You taught me that God had made me exactly the way I was supposed to be.
If you know any of these (except Grace, she’s in heaven now) please tell them I said thank you.
Who are some Sunday School Teachers that influenced you? And why? I would love to know other peoples experiences.
As usual, any comments, questions or criticisms can be left here or sent to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.