The problem with being a teacher is that my instinct is to — well, teach — whether someone wants to be taught or not. When I look at Truth or insight or see something off-base or even just other than I would wish it to be, I tend to try to “teach” it/him/her the “right” way — which in all honesty, sometimes, is no more than “my way,” that which conforms to my desire, my dream, my idea of perfection or ideal. As you can imagine, when I am “teaching” from these kinds of motives, it NEVER goes well. I mean as in NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER! EVER EVER! EVER EVER EVER! Not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all, as Julia Stiles poem says in 10 Things I Hate About You.
You blind Pharisee, first clean the inside of the cup and of the dish, so that the outside of it may be clean also.
God’s been working that out of me. I am NOT everyone’s teacher. It is not my responsibility to right all the wrongs in the world or to presume to teach everyone I meet, or even just those I care about how to be the person that GOD made them to be. Not everyone is my assignment and when I interfere in a job God has assigned to someone else or is handling on His own, things get real awkward, real quick and relationships are damaged and lost. Just because something is a good thing, does not mean it is my job to make it happen. I have to look for the part that God wants me to play for sure. But, sometimes that is standing back and just trusting that He can teach someone what they need to know all on their own without my help.
It may sound kind of silly and “no duh, Sherlock”-ish to those that don’t have the teaching gene. I have never actually thought I could do better than God, but I am all about finding the most effective and efficient way to get a job done spit-spot and move on. Waiting for GOD’s time can be excruciating because it feels like we are just dragging our feet, hanging around with nothing getting done, no plot developments, no forward movement in the story. Kind of like the middle section of Deathly Hallows for any Harry Potter readers out there. I’m just like, “Come ON, already. Let’s get this done and move onto the next thing! Surely there is something better to do than sit around and wait for something to happen.”
So I try to “help” things along, speed things up, drop not so subtle hints instead of waiting for GOD’s time and plan and way….and I invariably make a mess of it and end up as an emotional hot mess myself because I emotionally invested time and effort and caring into making something happen only to have the whole thing fall flat on its face and go absolutely nowhere! Broken feelings, hearts and hemorrhaging emotions everywhere. It’s bad, it’s ugly and I never get what I really want that way, nor what GOD wants for me.
TRUTH for MYSELF (if you can relate and benefit from this too, bonus — but I am teaching myself here, not telling anyone else what to do.) :
I have no business instructing others in doing the right thing if I don’t first clean up my own heart and life. I have no integrity if I teach others to do that which I am not willing to do myself or if I am all about fixing their “problems” without recognizing and dealing with my own first. My righteousness must flow from the inside out or it is phony and worthless. A sham, a fake, a fraud; and GOD sees the Truth no matter what impression I give to others for appearance and show.
Approval in GOD’s eyes is a matter of righteousness flowing from the inside out. Applying Truth and insight to my own life first before I presume to teach others; and to ask Him if this “student” is my responsibility or if I just need to love the person just as he is as GOD made him to be and let GOD make any attitude adjustments or course corrections. This is my assignment from GOD so I need to stop worrying about what anyone else thinks of me or what self-important impression I leave or my reputation of authority (or not), for I have no authority or importance or influence but what comes from GOD! My primary homework is to be slow to speak or teach and just sit back and let Him be the teacher while I am but His student and let Him tell me when it is class presentation day and I get to talk.
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous for the LORD your GOD will go with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9
I am not ashamed for I know in Whom I have believed and am convinced that He is able to keep that which I have entrusted to Him until that day. 2 Timothy1:12