The Teachers’ Difference
And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient. 2 Timothy 2:24
During teacher appreciation week (which concludes today) I noticed several “thank-you” and notes of appreciation on social media. Many people were lauding their teachers from childhood and high school. Amazingly my name was listed in some of the postings. Around 15 years ago, I had the opportunity to be a High School Science and Biology teacher. I was blessed to see that one of my former students posted that I had made Chemistry/Biology “fun.” I am encouraged that his perspective and recollection of our class created, not just head knowledge of a subject, but that he enjoyed and benefited from the classes. In other words- he did not just get data, or knowledge, he also learned some things about life. Christians can be joyful and live happy, healthy lives!
As Paul is writing to Pastor Timothy, he speaks about the servant of God being apt to teach. This is definitely a quality that is needed in ministry and certainly in classrooms of any kind. Teaching and learning is part of the plan God gave to mankind. We even have a Bible written by God so we can learn of Him. We must be able to read in order to study and read His Word. Thank the Lord for education and learning!
Who taught you – English with thoughtfulness? Who taught you – math with order and purpose? Who taught you and motivated you for history – so that the bad parts of history are hopefully not repeated? Be thankful for those teachers who took the time to teach in the classroom and made the effort to mold and shape you in civic and Christian ways.
All teachers make a difference. Some seem to make more an impact, and others less. Some teachers make a difference in areas other than merely the subject they are teaching. All teachers make some kind of a difference.
Every student knows the strong points and weak points of the teacher. Each student takes away specific memories from the classroom. Some memories are fond and are good. Other memories are difficult, or sad. Sometimes what is etched in the student the most are not the lessons, but the deportment, cheerfulness, or encouraging nature of the teacher. Teachers can and should be terrific motivators.
One word spoken harshly could define the teacher in the mind of a student. One off the cuff remark could ruin a reputation of the teacher in the mind of the student. One kind word could make an eternal difference in the life of a student. One expression of care or interest can make a big difference. Christians, who are also teachers, can even make an eternal impact because of the Gospel of Christ!
- Teachers reading this – thank you for doing what you do! What kind of difference will you make? Good or bad? A positive and encouraging or a discouraging difference?
- Students (and former students) will you look back and be thankful for the joyful moments and also be thankful for even the difficult lessons you learned in the classroom from a teacher?
Truly, teachers could be considered “servants of the Lord.” Teaching is definitely a calling. Thank you for being a difference maker in the lives of so many.