Thursday, May 1, 2014
Ada Brownell's "Swallowed by Life: Mysteries of Death, Resurrection and the Eternal?"
The Beginners’ Class
By Ada Brownell
I remember her as a brunette woman with her hair tucked back into a tiny bun. But it was her eyes that fascinated me. They radiated love.
Sister McPherson, as we called her, was my first Sunday school teacher. She didn’t mind that I didn’t have fancy dresses or pretty shoes—or that I was covered with freckles. I usually had at least one flour-sack dress.
Otherwise, I wore my brother’s hand-me-down coveralls.
Maybe she liked my red naturally curly hair combed into little coils like Shirley Temple’s. On the other hand, maybe she didn’t notice. Ten or more of us little girls and boys tucked into that tiny classroom for preschoolers—the “beginners” class.
The teacher arranged pictures on the “flannel board” as she told us Bible stories.
Most of my family of 10 were new Christians. I remember family devotions, but not Bible wonders like Sister McPherson told.
As I listened to the amazing true experiences of people in Bible days and memorized verses Sister McPherson taught, light beamed into my young heart. God loved me and had a plan for my life.
Then, Sister McPherson died. Mama took me to the funeral. I was sad, but the woman planted such faith in me I was tempted when I went by the casket to shout, “In the name of Jesus rise up!”
Seemed I knew God has a part in our homegoing as well as our living, though, and I was content. I knew someday Sister McPherson will be resurrected.
In my childhood years, Jews came from all over the world to Israel and it became a nation, the prophecy of Ezekiel’s Valley of Dry Bones, fulfilled. The church was so excited I knew about the Second Coming even as a beginner. I had no doubt Jesus would come back to earth. I still have that expectation because God’s Word tells us to be ready and watch (Matthew 24-25).
As I grew up, these verses became my favorite:
“But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).
I’ve watched for Jesus to come since childhood and now I’m a senior citizen. Some people quit watching for Him. Peter said in the last days there would be scoffers who would say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation” (2 Peter 3:4).
Jesus told us our lives are like a puff of steam. We’re on earth a while and then gone.
Sunday school teachers like Sister McPherson helped me to look forward to Christ’s return and know how to prepare for His coming. I was age 5 when I accepted Christ as Savior, and I was afraid He would come before I could get to the altar to repent of my sins.
Thank God for those who know even young children can understand the truths of the gospel, and they preach it and teach it so that we can have eternal life.
©Copyright Ada Brownell April 2014
Ada Brownell Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B001KJ2C06