Lesson Themes

The Mibu church has been busy with preparations for her next outreach. Just what goes into getting a group ready to teach? One of the biggest things is simply familiarizing them with the material to be taught, this time from a teacher’s viewpoint instead of the hearer’s. Also important is giving them an understanding of the philosophy behind our teaching. It’s common knowledge that we teach from Genesis 1:1, painting a picture of God through his actions in the Old Testament. But as we teach, there are specific themes that we bring out about the nature of God, Satan, and man. For instance, as we teach creation, we don’t just teach, “On the first day, God created this, on the second day… etc.” We emphasize that in creating everything, God was showing us that He is God. We magnify His awesome attributes, such as His knowledge, and His power, and His love for man.

It is during this time of preparation that the Mibu evangelists are developing their abilities to read a point in a lesson, determine the main themes, and teach accordingly. We work on helping them see beyond just reading the lesson out loud to their audience, but using the lesson as a guide and teaching what they know. Keeping to a theme is a major key here. Rather than simply pointing out what the themes are in each lesson, we have them study the lesson and write down the theme. Then we go over their conclusions. One thing we found after this had been going for a couple weeks was that even though the lesson themes are concise, they are still fairly lengthy to write out. So we had them come up with pictures to represent lesson themes. I loved seeing what the guys came up with!! Here’s a smattering of some of my favorites:

To represent God’s being present everywhere, they draw this picture.

“BV” is an abbreviation for their term for God, “Bamnyu Vangun.”

As the evangelists prepare to teach, they draw this picture next to any point that has to do with God’s attribute of being present everywhere. Then, as they are teaching, at a glance they can easily and quickly refresh their memories as to the main point they are working to get across.

Here’s their simple picture for when they are teaching that God is holy, and by nature his character does not allow him to associate with sinful man.

I like their picture for God’s faithfulness. He does what he will say he will do. When we taught in Mibu, this attribute was paramount, as they place a high value on a person who follows through with what they say they are going to do. This is a timeline. Exactly what God says will happen, it happens just like that at a later point on the timeline.

The picture they chose to represent the need for trusting in God’s very sure promises to save us from our sins looks like this: It’s a man crossing a river on a log bridge. Here, where this is a common event, the picture speaks volumes!

These are only a few of the pictures the teachers use to trigger their memories. As they prepare, they come to a conclusion for themselves which theme or themes are being taught. Then they check their conclusions with the the more experienced teachers who have been given a list of all the lessons and their respective themes. This seems to really help the guys “own” the lessons they teach.

Please be in prayer for us as a church, as there is still much prep work to be done before we are ready to move on with confidence. I feel so much joy working with these men whom we had a part in leading to the Lord, and teaching them how to lead others! Many are now involved in the training process themselves, and I simply act as their cheerleader. It truly is a delight getting up in the morning and doing this as my “job”! (Positions available, inquire by email! 🙂

For His Glory,
Joey and Brooke Tartaglia
Mibu, PNG