The importance of Bible school

By Pastor Mark Samuelson, Our Saviors Lutheran Church | Jul 17, 2013

Every year at this time my mother-in-law would search the paper to find as many consecutive Bible school programs as she could so that my wife would be kept busy all summer long going from one Bible School to another.

Even to this day, when we drive around Minneapolis my wife will say, “I went to Bible School in that church!” I asked her once if she had gone to every Bible school in her suburban Minneapolis area and she replied: “Yep, pretty much every one.”

It might account for her strong theology today and probably prepared her well to be the wife and mother of clergy.

When I pause long enough to remember all the challenging questions those boys came up with and the fact that they wouldn’t take my ‘pastor’ answer for granted, they must have got their strong faith from somewhere.

She can hold her own even now at the dinner table discussions with two and soon-to-be four clergy!

Her experience gives me the chance to talk about the importance of Bible school.

Often in life, we don’t pause to pay attention to the importance of events while we are experiencing them. Many times I have realized, later, that some event, some person or some experience prepared me for life in a way that I didn’t comprehend at the time.

This is certainly true of Bible school. Oh, yes, it is true that I remember the social things like being spooked by the graveyard and sharing a box lunch with a girl; but I now recognize the importance of those Bible stories, told with such variety and in such interesting ways.

I remember Mrs. Tollekson (bless her) standing behind the flannel board, reaching around to put the characters up from behind as she read the story.

She was trying to make it more like a movie and, if she could hide behind the board, get herself out of the way, we would concentrate more on the story itself. The only problem was that she was much wider than the flannel board.

She was wrong anyway. Bible stories are always connected to people.

People who read them, people who interpret them, people who choose the important ones for the situation, people who write songs about them, people who sing them, people who care enough to dedicate time to sharing them, people – just like the Bible characters themselves, who interact with God in special ways.

People and Bible – that is a pretty good formula for meaning, for finding out what the love of God means.

Maybe you want to see how many Bible schools your children can attend. Who knows, you might be preparing them to hold their own at the dinner table later when they have kids of their own.

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