On Being a Teacher

You are marketing your brand of Christianity. You are the best example of Christianity some will ever see. How near what it is supposed to be are you?

Historically the best teachers have taught best by example. Though they were not Christians, they form an example of teaching by example. Socrates was a peripatetic teacher. That is, he taught while walking. One young man who walked with him was Plato. Plato taught Aristotle. Aristotle influenced a young aspirant named Alexander whose exploits resulted in him being called “the Great.”

Great exhorters have leapt across generations to influence lives.

Augustine held high the torch of faith amid the ruins of Rome, a collapsing civilization. The flicker of that torch was seen years later by Martin Luther who led the Reformation of the church in Europe. 

Luther faced the hostility of church and state with his faith as a background to announce, “Here I stand.”

Robert Louis Stevenson wrote in his Travels with a Donkey, “The best thing we find in our travels through the wilderness of this life is an honest friend. We travel indeed to find them.

Today you might very well encounter someone looking for a friend. By becoming that friend you can bear witness of the faith by how you live and then by what you say. To be a witness, be a friend.

Pollution and littering are not limited to the world of paper, metal, and plastic. Look around in the landscape of your mind and you will likely find a junkyard of people. These are people you have discarded. They are your throwaways. Some of these may have been dropped as easily as a gum wrapper. Count the number you have dumped in the last year while looking for a perfect one. If you want an exciting adventure go back and try recycling some. We salvage bottles, aluminum cans, and newspapers. Why not recycle friends? Many fail to do this and live a lonely life. Friendship is self rewarding.

Emerson noted our misplaced priorities and commented: We take care of our health, we lay up money, we make our roof tight, and our clothing sufficient; but who provides wisely that he shall be not wanting in the best property of all — friends?”

You are a teacher, good or bad, dependent upon how you live, the love you show, and the friends you influence by your life and you sharing. Jesus is the prototype of befriending a person. He dined with Matthew, he went fishing with the apostles, He brightened the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus with friendship.

In effect you teach every person you befriend, if only for a moment, Enjoy life by befriending people in Jesus’ name by what you say — and first show.