Archive | April, 2017


21 Apr


I’ve had two brief stints at teaching school. The first time I did not do well at all. I was very young, knew everything, didn’t need anyone’s direction, was determined to be the “cool” teacher… and fell flat on my face.  And I do mean badly.  I’m not sure I had a single student during that time that learned ANYTHING under me.  It wasn’t long after I quit teaching that this funny thing called maturity set into my psyche (although some even today would say that was never so).  I finally listened to my mother (one of the greatest schoolteachers EVER) who taught me a philosophy called “Don’t smile until Christmas.”  Basically, this means that you can’t start off soft. You have to make sure that each student knows you mean discipline when it comes to teaching. I vowed to myself that if I ever got the opportunity to teach again, I would remember that.  Several years later, under the same administrator, I got that chance. This time, I had a blast.  Later,that school would close but I have continued on as a substitute teacher for the school district in which I reside.  I give you this history to say one thing: after growing up with a teacher, surrounded by other relatives who were teachers, and having been a teacher and also married to a teacher, I have come to one conclusion about the teaching profession:


Don’t get me wrong. I am called to Pastor. And I can’t imagine me doing anything else full time. But I do believe that teachers represent the most noble and honorable secular profession ever.  Let me give my reasons as to why I would make this statement.

  1. For them, it is not just a job. It is a calling. They don’t just think about their students during eight hours and forget them. I used to see my mother cry and stress over a student while at the dinner table. I have seen others do that as well. They want each student to succeed.
  2. They don’t do it for the paycheck. In fact, most of the time they are underpaid. They do it because they care. They want to make a difference.  That brings me to number three:
  3.  They make a difference. I can remember every teacher that made an impact on me. I have never forgotten their names. And it wasn’t just about education. They gave me life lessons… “Show me someone who likes to lose, and I will show you a loser.”…”Finish your race, fight the good fight, keep the faith”… They developed in me a love for literature, a passion for history, a desire to impact others.
  4. They have camraderie. They have each others backs. They form a bond and become like a little family. I have enjoyed some sweet friendships as a result of being a teacher. Friendships that last to the day. Oh, yes, there were a few exceptions. People who seemed to take an instant dislike to me or who just kept a wall up and refused to let anyone inside their circle. And there are those who treat substitutes like they had the plague. But trust me when I say those people are the minority. They are few and far between. When you make friends with a teacher, it’s the real deal.

In summary, thank you, my teacher friends for being some of the greatest people I’ve ever met. And thank you for STILL impacting my life… even at the ripe old age of 47!