Be a Sunday School Hero
By Billy Brown
We find a strange omission in 1 Samuel 17. The armies of Israel and the Philistines had met at Shochoh to do battle. The result of the battle would determine the freedom or servitude of God’s people. The armies positioned themselves on either side of the valley, the Philistines sent out their champion, and Israel sent out theirs...and that’s where we find something missing.
Israel had no champion, no one on whom to call. Saul had been the champion, but at this time he had become the king. The man who stood head and shoulders over the other Israelites didn’t want to risk his lifestyle (or even death) against a giant.
What about Saul’s mighty warriors? Sure, they would fight regular soldiers, no problem. But a giant? That was a different story. They didn’t like the odds. Saul offered riches, royalty, and relief from taxes. But no one was willing to become the champion. If Saul wouldn’t do it and the mighty men of Israel refused even to try, surely a common soldier didn’t stand a chance. So, the battlefield remained empty except for that giant of a man—Goliath.
Life goes far beyond the physical, mental, financial, and emotional. It is also spiritual. David knew this when he volunteered to become the champion of Israel. David faced Goliath with the most powerful weapons ever created—courage, confidence, character, and the power of God. These were his weapons rather than sling and stones. With these weapons, he became a hero. And so can you.
Bud Reese’s Invitation
I have my own personal hero. You would find nothing special about this man’s appearance, ability, talent, or intellect. But he is my hero for one reason. He showed enough interest in me to invite me to Sunday School. Until that time in my life, I seldom went to church, and I don’t ever remember attending Sunday School. To me, church was a strange and unusual place.
I still remember Bud Reese inviting me to attend the Sunday School class he taught. I thought it would be great, so I told him I would ask my dad if I could go. Sunday morning came, and I was nervous. I’d never been to Sunday School. Mom laid out my best clothes, and I dressed for the big event.
Turning Back on Sunday
It was a beautiful day as I walked the half block to church, the sun shining warm and the birds singing. But as I approached the building, I could hear the piano and organ playing. I stopped and thought to myself, “They’ve already started. If I go in now, everyone will turn and look at me.” So I turned and fled for home. No Sunday School that day.
The next week, Mr. Reese asked, “I looked for you Sunday; why didn’t you come?” I told him what happened, and he said, “It’s okay; they hadn’t started yet. They were only practicing, and no one’s going to turn and look at you.”
So, when the next Sunday rolled around, I got dressed and headed for Sunday School the second time. I reached the same spot, heard the same piano and organ, felt the same fear, and made the same flight back home. Sunday School had eluded me again.
Walking With My Hero
Mr. Reese didn’t give up. He wanted to know why I hadn’t come. Again, I told him. Again, he invited me to Sunday School, and I agreed to go. But on this third attempt, there was a slight difference. Mr. Reese came to my house and walked me to Sunday School. More than 50 years later, I’m still faithfully attending.
Mr. Reese showed initiative, courage, determination, and resolve. Because he cared enough to invite me to Sunday School and to see that I came, I was eventually saved and answered the call to preach. In my eyes, Bud Reese is a Sunday School hero.
You, too, can be a Sunday School hero. Millions of young people just like me have never been to Sunday School and will never go unless you go to their homes and bring them. And someday, in their eyes, you will be a Sunday School hero.
About the Writer: Billy Brown pastors Faith FWB Church in Columbia, Tennessee, and works as a psychotherapist
for Centerstone, a mental health services facility.