What you fear your kids say about you in Sunday School.


I had one of those cringe moments Sunday morning as I was teaching the 4 & 5’s class during church. We were talking about sin and how we all do it. The kids were talking about how they kick, get angry and lie, etc. I said, “Mrs. Melody sins too.” Of course I wasn’t exactly ready to start listing them so freely and childlike but one of the girls said, “Like what! What do you do?”

I wasn’t prepared for this and I was suddenly thinking of the most sanitized sins I wanted to share with my class. So I said, “Well, sometimes I …..” and right at that moment this sweet little boy interrupts and says, “Um, Mrs. Melody, in Sunday School this morning Sophie (my daughter) told Mrs. Amy (Sophie’s Sunday School teacher) that her Mom, um, her Mom, um…..”

At this point I’m sweating bullets and wonder  what my daughter might have felt compelled to tell her entire Sunday School class regarding my sin. I’m mentally backtracking through the morning. Did I yell at anyone, kick the dog, say a bad word or honk at someone on the way to church? Not that I could remember. Not to say it hasn’t ever happened.

Finally this sweet little boy finishes his statement. “Sophie said that her Mom’s Mom was sick and in the hospital but she came home but we still need to pray for her.”

Relieved that a list of my personal sins were not rattled off in Sunday School I said, “Oh yes, you are so right and thank you for bringing that up. She would love your prayers.” The little boy then says, “Mrs. Melody, we should do it right now. We should pray for her now. I’ll do it.”

So we stopped in the middle of our lesson about sin and took a divine rabbit trail and prayed for my Mama who is feeling much better but still was prayed over by a sweet group of 4 &5’s. I looked at this little boy and said, “You just  led our entire class in prayer and I’m so proud of you and I’m thankful you did that. I will call my Mom today and tell her you prayed for her.That was a special gift you gave to me.” He smiled the biggest grin and I almost cried in class.

And then we went back to discussing my sin. Oh fun. I said something about my sin of complaining and not obeying God and my kids would say, “Oh yeah, I do that too.One time I ……” They were so open with their mistakes and sin. There was no condemnation but a sweet childlike simplicity of admitting their own sin and being okay that I’m a sinner too. It was refreshing and so unlike adults in church. We squirm, don’t we, when personal sin is brought up. If we must, we choose to talk about the respectable sins like complaining, not being thankful, worrying, etc. which are all sinful but seem more acceptable to us for some reason. Sometimes we are slow to identify with other people when they discuss their sin. We’d rather be the ones to offer prayer for them than to admit we get tripped up by the same sin. So my 4&5’s taught me a lot this Sunday morning. I want to be as unreserved and open as they are. I’m pretty sure this has to do with the child like faith Jesus references in his talks with people in the Bible.

I was describing to my kids how God says he forgives as far as the east is to the west and how he forgets our sin when we confess our sin to him. And how comforting that is. This same little boy says, “Yeah, and it’s so cool. He’s the only one that can do that.”

It was a great day in Junior church. I think I’ll go back next week to see what else they teach me.




  1. Kids are so amazing, aren’t they? And their faith is so real and honest and pure. And their prayers–WOW! When do we lose that kind of faith? And thank God we have the opportunity to witness it in our kids!!

    • Sara…..you have asked the question I’ve been wondering myself….”when do we lose that kind of faith”? I want my childlike faith back – the kind that would circle up a group of strangers in a public place to pray. That would take a plate of food over to a stranger and sit for hours and talk. I miss those childlike faith days. Waaaaa I wanna stop growing up. Ha! Kidding but not.

  2. They let you teach Sunday School? Now that sounds like a risk. Just kidding, I can’t imagine a more perfect person. I bet you make everything fun and full of Jesus and memorable all at the same time. Now is a good time to say that whenever I teach Sunday School I am always amazed at what I learn.

    • Ha! Funny my friend. I think they only let me teach because of the gaping void of needed teachers. Yeah, I debated on posting this in the “risk” link up…..clearly I’m struggling with sharing a risk of mine – actually I don’t think I’m taking any right now and that is speaking volumes to me in itself. hmmmm. Maybe I’ll skydive over the weekend and post about it this Thursday. Nah, I’d end up being like that youtube clip of the old lady whose shirt was flapping in the wind among other things when her skydiving adventure went all wrong.

  3. What a great story! Out of the mouths of babes, huh? How different our churches would look if we stopped “faking it” with each other. I suspect we’d all finally realize there are NO perfect families or people — and we’d be more encouraging of each other for being so human. Oh, what we can learn from little ones!

    • yeah, the kids really do say it best, don’t they? And they help us get to a point of seeing it best. Love those chill in’s!

  4. That’s so funny what you said about kicking the dog. My youngest son (sadly) actually has kicked the dog when he gets angry, and he fessed up in front of some friends of ours. Now they ask him if he’s kicked the dog lately every time they see him! Kids really do say (and do) the darndest things! #RiskRejection

  5. I like what you say about it being part of what Jesus meant by the faith of a child. I never thought of it that way, but I believe you’re right.

    • I love how kids have that lack of fear of what others think. they say what’s on their mind and generally truthful about calling things like they see them. There is no built in social protocol. That’s all learned from the world around them and I have to wonder if this is part of making a childlike faith fall back into a grown up faith that builds walls because it’s just what you do.

  6. I love this post. I have had similar conversations with my 5-year-old-who-is-about-to-turn-6. He asked me about my sins. I don’t remember what I said. But I do remember not know what to say. All my sins seemed so….adult. I couldn’t share those things with him. But in reality, wasn’t I just being disobedient to God? Again, I don’t remember what I said. But I’m ready for next time.

    • What I find funny is that kids seemed shocked when they find out adults sin too – I think it might be the air we put on or the shock we display when they screw up and sin. Something I’m working on…..my response to my kids’ human sin depraved nature.

  7. Love this and and your #riskrejection heart to share it with us! Thank you. Out of the mouths of babes, eh?

  8. Oh, yes! If only adults were the same way! So open. Perhaps we wouldn’t feel it necessary to pretend we have it all together? Perhaps we would be more willing to just say “I’m sorry” instead of rush to our own defense?