Wednesday, December 19, 2018

In a Seventh-day Adventist Church, being a superintendent is a crucial task. They are the ones planning, organizing and overseeing the Sabbath School Program(the first part of our church service), which lasts for an hour.

Being a superintendent at a young age can be overwhelming. I had my first superintendent task this year. It was a challenging yet rich experience for me. Struggling with insecurity and anxiety, I was able to learn to put that aside and focus on what's important-serving Jesus.

I remember feeling lost by the lack of training and experience, that I looked to the internet for tips from fellow Adventists, and I only found a few.

I'd like to share with you some tips that I learned along the way.

1. Focus on Jesus.

This is the most important tip I can give you. There will be a lot of distractions thrown in, that can make you lose your focus, your true purpose on why you're doing this. Make a mental note to always look to Jesus. You are doing this because of Him. One verse that has helped me out a lot, one I write all over my "superintendent notebook" is this:
"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord, not for men." Colossians 3:23
Try to memorize it by heart and repeat it to yourself when you feel lost and exhausted with the tasks and duties piling up.

2. Plan and prepare.

I recommend having a "superintendent notebook" where you can write your opening remarks, participants' names, and contact numbers, or even have a space where you can journal your thoughts to God. Having a steady notebook where you can write superintendent related thoughts will come in handy.

Pray for and choose your participants wisely. Try to scan around the congregation and look for new faces you can approach to give a part in the service. Always get your participants' contact number so you can remind them a day before. 

Through this, they can also let you know if an emergency occurred, and they might not make it; which gives you time to look for another one.  Be sure to have extra copies of mission stories and promotional talks. In case you can't find a replacement, you can be prepared to do the part yourself.

Plan for your opening remarks. As much as possible, make sure it is founded on Biblical Truth and make it short and sweet.

3. Time is gold.

One elder in church really appreciated that I started on time and ended on time. As much as possible, start on time. You can also start 5 minutes early to allot for the song service. By doing this you contribute to the smooth timely flow of the church service in which participants after the Sabbath School program will have their rightfully allotted time to speak.

4. Ask for help.

Help is always offered in my church. I hope that's the way it is in yours too. So approach and ask for advice and tips from fellow church members. Sometimes shifts in the program's sequence may happen, be sure to ask for suggestions from church elders before moving forward to a decision.

5. Remember, God is in control.

No matter what happens, trust that God is in control. Anxiety can creep up when participants are not yet arriving and there are only 10 minutes left to start. In these moments, trust that God will carry them safely and on time to church. He is working behind the scenes. Remind yourself that no matter what happens, "God is in control."

Therefore, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake." Deuteronomy 31:6

It's not always going to be easy. You won't always feel support from the people around you. I have felt underestimated because I'm young, I've heard comments that I'm just "too young" for the task. Instead of focusing on those comments, I cling to 1 Timothy 4:12, "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity." 

You don't have to prove yourself to others. This isn't what it's about, anyway. It's about believing that God has a purpose for you. It's about working at this duty with all your heart, as working for the Lord and not for men. You've got this! God's got you! 

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