Q & A
Q. How am I going to get my people to participate in a
teacher training series? I can barely get them to attend
anything like that!
A. Getting people to "participate" is a concern of all
church leaders. It seems harder and harder to get folks to turn
out–especially for training sessions.
What can we do? One thing we absolutely must do is make sure
what we ask them to participate in is worth their time and
effort. They have a ton of stuff on their platter! So when we
ask them to attend a meeting or training session, it's got to be
worth their time and effort. The takeaway, the benefit, the
blessing has got to be there. So we've got to schedule meetings
that really need to take place, that serve a valid
purpose, the results of which will be obvious and positive.
They’ve got to make a difference. Otherwise, we need to pass.
I’m afraid too often people have gone home feeling like they
really didn’t get anything meaningful out of what they just
What do training sessions have to provide? Inspiration,
information, motivation, fresh insights, new ideas, solutions,
request for participants' input and suggestions. I think too
often people get the idea that they're just going to just be
talked to, when maybe they need to be listened to.
The training session needs to involve them, listen to them, draw
them out, get their thoughts and insights—hear their experiences
so others can benefit.
This is what we’ve tried to do in The Teacher I Want to Be.
The study addresses a critical need churches have—training
people to study the Bible and teach the Bible.
Danny Akin is eminently qualified. Trust me, the inspiration,
information, motivation, insights and ideas are there. The
workbook, discussion/interaction involve participants in a
wonderful way. The takeaway is there. The benefits are there.
You won’t be wasting people’s time. You’ll see.
Now, some questions for YOU: Is there really a need to train
our Bible teachers? Do they deserve the training? Does the Bible
we teach deserve our highest and best effort? Is the message
really worth delivering effectively? Is it worth trying to get
it into people’s lives? Can we do a better job training our
people to study and teach the Bible?
The answer is YES, YES, YES, YES, YES and YES. Don’t give up
Q: What's going to make the new teacher training resource
with Danny Akin special so that our Bible teachers can really
benefit from it?
A. First of all, the videotaping couldn't have gone
better. I believe the audience would have stayed all day!
Danny is an outstanding communicator and so at home with the
material, people feel like they've known him forever.
Here's a special feature: The curriculum is made up of two
modules that current and prospective teachers will
want to complete. Module 1 (sessions 1, 2 and 3) deal with "how
to study the Bible," while module 2 (sessions 4, 5 and 6) deal
with "how to teach the Bible."
People who want to know how to study the Bible--but don't
plan to teach-- can work through module 1--how to study the
Bible. Naturally, your current and future teachers will work
through both modules.
We're now adding a third module that will consist of
ten 8-minute micromessages in which Danny will deal
with practical issues teachers face on a week-to-week basis. It
will be ideal for ongoing training. In addition to teaching tips
and methods, he'll give fresh insights on what's happening in
the "community" around us. A printed discussion outline will be
The workbook will be a "workbook" in the true sense of the
word. Participants will actually work it during the sessions,
and therefore, will retain more of what they experience.
The subtitle of the series says it all: Learning and
Sharing the Word of God. If there ever were a time when our
people need to know how to study and teach the Bible, it is NOW!
The Teacher I Want to Be is going to be a blessing!
Q: Why don't your series feature lots of offsite cut-a-ways,
interviews, short drama clips, that kind of thing?
A: Good question. First of all, we've done a good bit of it
over the years. In fact, our newest series Have a New Family
by Friday with Dr. Kevin Leman includes some offsite clips.
They're fun and you'll like them. But we have to be very careful
doing this because it's typically expensive, sometimes
requiring professional actors, complicated lighting gear, crew,
you name it. But the main reason we haven't done more of it is
that video clips can take precious time away from the
teacher/instructor. And since we normally have only 25 or so
minutes for a session, any time we designate for an interview,
etc., is time the speaker won't have. After 23+ years, I can
assure you that the talent's biggest challenge is condensing 60
to 90 minutes of material into one 25 to 30-minute video
presentation. Our belief is that If the talent has something
inspiring and compelling to say, he or she deserves the time to
As I've said before, what we try to do is bring you a
world-class speaker in a workshop setting just like you'd have
at your church, but for a ton less money than it would cost to
bring the speaker in, in person. Think about it: When the
speaker leaves, he takes everything he knows with him. When you
purchase one of our studies, you've got the "best of the
speaker," you own it forever and can use it whenever–for a very
reasonable price. Long answer, but the question deserves it.
Q: What's so great about having the actual leader kit and
the FREE streaming feature? Why have both?
A: We will always offer the actual leader kit that comes with
individual DVD and CD kits, participant book, leader guide, etc.
There's nothing like owning the actual kit and having it in your
hands to use anywhere and anytime you wish.
But in addition to the actual leader kit, you NOW
automatically get a permanent--unlimited STREAMING user license
FREE of charge with most leader kit purchases. Streaming is
ideal when individuals and groups want to view various series at
home, office, even at the church in different locations--at any
time they wish--for as long as they wish. It's like taking a
college course at home. You log in and view the program anywhere
you have an Internet connection. Just remember, however, to
stream a series you must have an Internet connection.
If you're planning to stream a series on a retreat out in the
boondocks and find there's no Internet service, you're out of
luck. But if it's a Sampson series, you've got the actual leader
kit with the DVDs/CDs and all. So no worries!
Some companies offer one or the other. We feel it's important
for you to have both–at the price of the leader kit only.
NOTE: Right now, you can get two leader kits for the price of
Q: Do you have any new series coming out soon?
A: Yes, here's a glimpse of what's coming.
#1–We're producing a new series with DR. KEVIN LEMAN entitled
HAVE A NEW FAMILY BY FRIDAY that will be ready in early
2013. It will consist of all new material dealing with how
everyone in the family contributes to a healthy home
environment. He talks marriage, parenting, single parenting,
discipline, raising teenagers, grandparenting and much more.
Plus, he does a bonus session on "birth order." It's been nearly
five years since we did HAVE A NEW KID BY FRIDAY, so it's time
to hear from Dr. Leman again. (available in early 2013)
#2–Coming in late spring will be new teacher-training
curriculum by DR. DANNY AKIN entitled THE TEACHER I WANT TO
BE. He says, "Out of all the courses I teach and have
taught, this is my favorite. Seeing the light turn on in
people's eyes--seeing them get excited about teaching the Word
of God--new people step forward for training--it just doesn't
get any better than that." Our belief here at Sampson is that
churches desperately need a resource like this. Pastors and
educators are telling us that they have no resource whatsoever
to use in training their teachers. They're going to love Danny
Akin! (available in late spring, 2013)
#3–Another Sunday school/life group/Bible fellowship--or
whatever you call it--resource that's in the works is FORWARD
TO THE BASICS with ALLAN TAYLOR. Unlike SUNDAY SCHOOL DONE
RIGHT! that we did with Allan four years ago (in 4,000+ churches
now), this new series will be hands-on and practical in nature,
full of ideas and suggestions for getting Bible study programs
going and growing again. When you think about it, getting "back
to the basics" is usually a step "forward." FORWARD TO THE
BASICS will be available in plenty of time for use in the
fall of 2013. (available in late summer, 2013)
On another subject: We've never heard of audience attendance
reports like we've heard from GARY FRAZIER'S IT COULD HAPPEN
TOMORROW! Just proves that people are interested in Bible
prophecy, and they're being equipped and blessed by Gary
Frazier. He teaches it all over the world. If you want to offer
a study that will get people involved, consider IT COULD
Other series are on the drawing board. If you have
suggestions or program ideas, I'd love to hear from you. Email
Q: Why do you believe so strongly in the value of video-based
teaching and training?
A: The answer really goes back to why I started the company in
the first place in May of 1989. I realized that most churches
would never be able to experience the in-person ministry of some
of the world’s most outstanding speakers, authors and teachers.
Demand was high, schedules were limited, costs were great,
logistics were complicated.
I thought, “Why not take these personalities to local
churches the next best way possible? On video—with a live
audience just like a workshop setting at church—with participant
books—discussion and interaction—led by a facilitator. As we
moved forward, churches seemed to appreciate it, as did the
speakers and churches. It just made sense.
Think about it: For a fraction of the cost of bringing in a
guest speaker, the church could purchase the video leader kit,
own it for forever, use it whenever, with groups of all sizes,
at the church, in homes, offices, as often as they wish. Plus,
participants would have their own workbook that contained the
speaker’s actual content—and own that forever!
Consider the fact that Danny Akin can teach only around
twenty marriage workshops a year. But in just five months,
nearly 1,000 churches have purchased his Biblical Marriage
video series that we produced. Churches have Danny on big screen
video teaching his material the next best way to having him
there in person. And they can use it with groups, as a
counseling resource, library checkout, Sunday morning
How long would it take Kevin Leman to deliver 30,000+
six-session seminars in all 50 states? Several lifetimes. But
that’s how many of his leader kits we’ve sold. What a terrific
way to multiply someone’s ministry. And what a terrific way for
a church or group to own “the best” of Kevin Leman for a tiny
fraction of what it would cost to bring him to the church in
The goal is to get the ministry out there as quickly,
effectively and at as low a price as possible—to as many
churches and groups as possible! And let me add: If churches
seriously need and want one of our studies, yet honestly have no
money at all to work with, we’ll find a way to get it to them.
Yes, I believe in value of video teaching and training. It