Are Your Teachers VIPs?
One of the most important resources in the local church is the Bible class teacher. They invest their time and effort in instructing others in the Word, and they deserve the depths of our gratitude and more. Too often, however, our teachers receive no or few expressions of thanks. This shouldn't be. In the strongest possible way, I want to encourage churches to do more to thank their teachers. Here are a few ideas.
Thank You Notes
Encourage members to write thank you notes to their teachers and their kids' teachers. Come up with a system that makes this an easy task for members.
Elders must lead the way on this. Sending one card signed by all the elders is nice. Each elder sending each teacher a hand-written note is way better.
If I had my way, every teacher would be compensated. We pay preachers, youth ministers, cleaners, and mowers. Why not teachers? A token gift of $50 per quarter taught would be doable for most churches; other budget items can wait (you know the items of which I speak; they aren't nearly as important as the church's education program). Teachers deserve more than that, but it's a start.
If a church is leery of starting this practice, I understand. Why not give books as gifts? There are any number of Bible study resources that would make great additions to the home libraries of your teachers. Plus, you are investing in their continued education.
Host an Annual Banquet
Recently, I was asked to speak at a church's teachers banquet. I was already in town to conduct a Teaching Rocket seminar the next day. The banquet was hosted at a nice local restaurant in a private room. The atmosphere was very nice. If I had been a teacher at that church, I would have been very touched by such an event.
Whether you have the banquet at a local restaurant or at church, show your teachers honor with a banquet. Hand out an annual Teacher of the Year Award. If only for a night, make your teachers feel like VIPs.
What ideas do you have for honoring our churches' teachers? Share in the comments below.