For many years, actually about forty, I was a classroom teacher. I taught in eleven different states and over twenty different schools. I taught in public schools, Christian schools and even a private school for the children of diplomats. I wanted to be a teacher since I was a child and I worked hard to make that dream come true. But it not come without sacrifice, just as all things worth having require some kind of sacrifice. I am grateful to my high school Spanish teacher, Señora Mary Smith, who encouraged me in pursuing my gift with language. She became my model and I became her disciple. A disciple is another word for a student. I was her student for all four years of high school and was happy to be able to tell her that I was majoring in Spanish in college in order to become a Spanish teacher. I know for sure that many of the methods that she used so successfully became part of my routine with my own students, but none more so than constant encouragement and pointing out what was right with their work first, then gently leading them to correct errors. I think that is the way that Jesus deals with me, too.
In spite of my age, I do not consider myself fully trained yet. I am not like Jesus, but I am a work in progress, becoming like Jesus. Note that “becoming” is a progressive verb and that’s what I am, a work in progress. In turn, I have tried to be a role model for others to follow so that they, too, can learn to be disciples of the Lord. One of the songs that I sang to encourage myself is “He’s Still Working on Me.” It is as true today as the first time I sang it many decades ago. In my impatience, I thought sometimes that I would arrive at the station, get off the train and continue with the rest of my life. But I’m still on the train of being made into His image, and I don’t want off until He is totally done with me. That day will come when I stand in His presence, but in the meantime, I am still a willing disciple, ready to learn the new lesson that He has for me each day. Just as I did not learn Spanish overnight, I have not learned all that God has to teach me in one or two lessons or devotionals or even years of them. There is always something new that He can teach me, some new way that I need to learn, some new path to take and something about me that needs to change to be better.
Yes, I am a disciple, but I am also a teacher and so is each of you who proclaims to be a Christian. We are not saved to hold the message in our hearts and minds and be quiet about the wonderful gift we have. We are saved to tell others, to teach them the way that they should go so that they can also celebrate a new life in Christ with us. We are each a disciple and each a teacher. Each one teach one, then two, then three until the world knows the Gospel and Jesus returns.
May each of you fulfill your roles as disciple of the Lord and teacher for those who seek Him. Have a blessed and wonderfully fruitful day!
He’s Still Working On Me by Nashville Digital
When you listen to the song, please listen to each verse and not each chorus. This song has a lot of wisdom and encouragement in it.
2 thoughts on “Disciple and Teacher”
Well said, Vickie. And I am with you, no matter how long we’ve been Christians, or how many times we’ve read through the Bible, we are constantly growing in the Lord, and are at all times a work in progress. As Paul said: “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16).
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Vickie, your testament reminds each of us that God’s work within each of us continues each and every day. I appreciate learning more about your teaching journey. I believe I was drawn to teaching because of the influence of my own teachers as well as my Dad and most of his siblings, who were also teachers.