3 Keys to an Apprenticeship

By Daniel Edmonds

Original Blog post here @ sundayschoolleader.com

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? Ephesians 4 calls for ‘pastors and teachers to equip the saints for the work of ministry.’ To follow biblical instruction, teachers should step into the shoes of great biblical examples like Elijah, Jesus, and Paul to raise up next generation leaders through an apprenticeship.


KEY #1 – Spiritual development

Every effective leader is indwelt by the Spirit to accomplish the work God places before them. A key for any leader is to stay available to the Spirit to be used for God’s glory. Begin by developing an accountability time with your apprentice for the practicing of basic spiritual disciplines: studying the Bible, spending time in prayer, sharing your faith, stewardship of resource, and serving others (Growing Sunday School Teams, Lawrence Phipps and Daniel Edmonds). By holding each other accountable in these disciplines, you will both be strengthened in ministry.

Key# 2 – Skill development

Take your apprentice to State or Association conferences, read books together, send links to online resources, and participate in local church events that focus on developing skills for their role as a leader. Do not feel like that you are alone in this process. Use other leaders to instruct and inspire you and your apprentice.

Key #3 – Specific training

Without question the best training for an apprentice is on-the-job or ‘follow-me’ training. Begin with them observing you (debrief), do the task together (debrief/evaluate), and finally they do it with you observing (debrief/evaluate).

Pray for and enlist an apprentice soon!


Daniel-Edmonds21Daniel Edmonds is a State Missionary for the Alabama Baptist Convention, State Board of Missions. He serves as the Director of the Office of Sunday School and Discipleship. He co-authored the book Growing Sunday School TEAMS. Go here for more information and for Sunday School resources produced by the Alabama Baptist State Convention.