6 We have different gifts that are consistent with God’s grace that has been given to us. If your gift is prophecy, you should prophesy in proportion to your faith. 7 If your gift is service, devote yourself to serving. If your gift is teaching, devote yourself to teaching. 8 If your gift is encouragement, devote yourself to encouraging. The one giving should do it with no strings attached. The leader should lead with passion. The one showing mercy should be cheerful (Romans 12:6-8, Common English Bible).
Sometimes I am not sure where to start. It is my firm belief, and I believed it before I spent a year in the classroom, teachers have the most important job in our society. They do it for a salary that few people with a degree would accept. They do it because they love children, they know how important their role is, not because it is them doing it, but because if someone doesn’t do it, society will not be able to function. Someone has to teach the next generation.
I met a young woman many years ago who wanted to be a teacher. If you asked her why, her answer was, “I like getting off at 3:00 every afternoon and having two weeks off for Christmas break, a week of spring break, a lot of holidays and three months off in the summer.” If she ever did actually teach I can’t help but wonder if she was shocked by what she experienced when she finally did get to the classroom.
It isn’t that easy. Lesson plans must be written. Preparation for the next day takes some time. Grading papers can be extremely time consuming. And on and on.
Long before my experience in the classroom I believed teachers were as called to ministry as any pastor. Theirs is a ministry. It is a different ministry than mine, but it is still a ministry. Police officers and fire fighters I think of in the same way. The work is a calling.
Something I usually think about this time of year, how can we in the Church support the ministry of our public school teachers. I have had congregations provide meals for teachers, congregations that did school supply drives. Diboll UMC does a big school carnival type event and the prizes are school supplies. Another congregation I know invites all the teachers in their school district and all of their families to a Tex-Mex dinner at the church on the night following the first day of school. It is a lot of people. Who, after the most stressful day of the year, and having to make that after school trip to Walmart, didn’t have to worry about making dinner. It was done, come eat and enjoy time with your colleagues.
The list of things congregations do is endless. Further, people come up with new ideas all the time. They support our community in one of its most important functions.
It has been said that one of the most noble things one person can do for another person is pray. With that in mind, We need to pray for our teachers, schools’ faculty and staff and do it on an ongoing basis over the entire school year.
Perritte Memorial UMC has adopted a local elementary school. Last Sunday, following worship, 12 of us drove over to that school. We walked the hallways and prayed over every classroom and spaces children might be.
This Sunday I will ask all our congregation to be a prayer partner for each teacher and/or staff members. As for those who are home bound we need you but even more important, our teachers need you. The one thing you can do for ours is to pray.
We plan to have a teacher and staff member of the week and ask the congregation to go over and pray with them. I pray that each teacher will feel like they are overwhelmed with love and prayer.
Too many of us feel he was distributing did the summer since,
And please, pray for our teachers. Even if your kids are grown and gone from home, barbecue sauce.
Seeking the genuine,
Copyright 2020, J Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved