When I first agreed to teach the new two-year-old class, I must admit I was a little bit apprehensive. It had been twenty years since I last taught this age group and my daughter, Tia, was one of my students. The day before beginning this class I told my wife, Beverley, that we needed to stop by the county kennel and pick up three puppies. Why? So I can hand them out in class, so the kids would have something to occupy them for forty-five minutes. And at the end of class when they drug their new, furry friends out to their parents, I would immediately be fired as their teacher and promptly replaced with a responsible adult. In spite of everything, after twenty weeks in the classroom I have come to the conclusion that it is by far the best class I have ever had the privilege to teach. They have learned a few things from me. Like toddlers singing “Jesus Loves Me” in bass. However, I must admit that they have taught me a few things along the way that I did not know.
The lessons each Sunday were about Jesus. For about three weeks the lessons focused on the love of Jesus and how He loved all the children of the world. We would sing the song:
Jesus loves the little children
All the children of the world
Red, brown, yellow
Black and white
They are precious in His sight
Jesus loves the little children
Of the world
During part of the class session I would allow the three of them to crawl up onto the table to watch the PowerPoint presentation. It would feature each week a picture of Jesus with a variety of children from around the world with a couple of them sitting on his lap. These two-year-old’s could relate to the picture, because one of them was African American, another was asian/hispanic and the third was a white, blue eyed blond. After the presentation each week they would crawl back off the table into their seats. However, one Sunday morning instead of going back to their seat all three decided to crawl over into my lap. Surprised I said, “Hey, boys and girls you know the drill. It is time to get back in your seats.” Just then the lady who came in to assist me with the class pointed to the picture on the laptop screen and the large one just like it hanging on the classroom bulletin board . It was Jesus with the little children. She said, “they are just acting out the lesson.” So I let them sit on my lap and we sang “Jesus loves the little children” before they returned to their seats.
Little two year old’s can teach a teacher a lot about the importance of modeling the lessons of the Bible. They learn by play and acting out the lessons. Playing the role of Jesus plays an essential part in teaching.
Jesus used children to teach His disciples. “At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, ‘Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me” (Matt. 18:1-5). Later “little children were brought to Him that He might put His hands on them and pray, but the disciples rebuked them. But Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.’ And He laid His hands on them and departed from there” (Matt. 19:13-15).
Jesus wanted His disciples to watch and learn from the little children. Little children need to watch and learn from us about Jesus.
— Daniel R. Vess