… for gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight; for receiving instruction in prudent behavior, doing what is right and just and fair; for giving prudence to those who are simple, knowledge and discretion to the young. Proverbs 1:2-4 (NIV)
Once upon a time, three teachers were accidentally locked in a classroom. Having nothing in common they chose to play rather than talk. The first teacher, who had taught for many years, decided to take some clay and model some wagons. The second teacher, who had also taught for many years, worked with the clay and crafted a bird. The third teacher, fresh from University, sat observing the two veteran teachers and was given insight into the significance of their play.
For as she watched she realised that the first teacher’s wagons made a laager representing her defence mechanism. A bulwark against the vicissitudes of her profession and a stockade against the challenges from her students. This teacher was content with her past achievements and wanted to stay safe and secure with the familiar. In contrast, the bird constructed by the second teacher represented hope. It afforded her the freedom to fly and investigate new horizons with her students, to explore the future world, and soar to greater heights as fresh winds empowered her.
Then it struck the novice teacher; as she faced the year ahead, she had to decide which of the two teachers she wanted to be.
Similarly, if you’re a volunteer Sunday School teacher, leading a small group, conducting seminars, pastoring a church, home schooling, or working in the teaching profession, you need to ask yourself what kind of a teacher you want to be. Will you choose to build wagons and retreat into your laager, or will you “hope in the Lord . . . renew (your) strength (and) soar on wings like eagles” Isaiah 40:31.
In the words of Chris and Laura Christensen’s song:
“Like the birds we must someday leave the nest,
And put what we’ve been learning to the test.
We should not shrink back or be afraid to fall,
When we hear His voice, the upward call.
For it’s time to fly, it’s time to spread our wings,
And catch the wind of the Spirit that’s blowing through our lives.
And it’s time to soar, higher than we’ve been before,
The wind of the Spirit is blowing, it’s blowing through our lives.”