“One of my neighbors is a teacher over at Elmsbrook Elementary,” Stan commented one morning. “She and her husband came over for dinner last Saturday.”
“Good time?” I asked.
“Fabulous,” Stan replied. “Great people. Good neighbors. Committed believers.”
“What does she teach?” I asked.
“We talked about that,” Stan replied. “She teaches the fifth grade, but she had an interesting perspective on how we are all teachers, as well as all being students.”
“We are all teachers and we are all students,” I said. “How does that work?”
“It depends,” Stan replied.
“Who we listen to,” Stan said, “and what we say and do. Seems to me that applies to every area of my life, but especially in my faith walk. I am to be a student by listening to God, and I am to be a teacher by being intentional about my faith.”
“But,” I asked, “what if other people don’t want what you have to teach them about your faith?”
“That’s up to them,” Stan replied. “I am to do what I am to do and leave the results in God’s very capable hands. The apostle Paul wrote about this to his friend Timothy. While it seems Paul was writing to Timothy specifically about Timothy’s leading the church, it seems to me that Paul was also writing to each one of us for how we are to conduct our lives as teachers and students.”
“In what way?” I asked.
“At one point in Paul’s first letter to Timothy,” Stan said, “Paul told Timothy to pay close attention to himself and to his teaching.”
“Pay close attention to himself and to his teaching,” I repeated. “I see how this can have a broader application. To pay close attention to myself is like being careful about what I am taught. If I want to be taught God’s way, I need to go to Him and pay close attention to what He has to say.”
“That’s it!” Stan replied. “That’s the part about being a student. How about the part of being a teacher?”
“Well,” I replied, “I guess that would be like taking what I learn from God and manifesting it in my life so that others may see, hear, and learn.”
“More than a guess, my friend,” Stan replied with a smile.
Bible verses to consider:
Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching. 1 Timothy 4:16.
Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. Acts of the Apostles 20:28.
You call me Teacher and Lord; and you are right; for so I am. John 13:13.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for all you have to teach me about you, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and everything you have for me to learn so I will manifest you and what you teach me to make a difference in this world. I confess that too often I do not seek to learn from you, and I do not manifest what you teach me. Please forgive that foolish approach to living the life you have given me to live for you and your kingdom. Please, Father, help me to follow every step of your lead so I not only learn all you have for me, but I manifest that to make a difference because of what you teach me. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.
Think on this: Have you come to the knowledge of God’s saving grace so that you have the assurance of spending eternity in His presence? If no, why? Do you not know it is His free and gracious gift that needs only to be accepted? If you do have the assurance of salvation and redemption, how are you doing with learning all you can about God so you can manifest that to the watching world, to make a difference for God and for His kingdom? If you sense there is a need for change in being a student as well as a teacher of what God has for you, how is that change going to happen? Is that what you want? Why or why not?