My husband, Mike, and I owned an auto repair shop for thirty years. His knowledge of cars never rubbed off on me – in other words, you don’t want me to change your oil or work on your car for any reason. However, there are some things I’ve learned about cars over the years…well, actually, that’s not true. Let me reword it. There are some common-sense things most of us know to do keep our vehicles in good running condition. Here are a couple to keep in mind. I took the liberty to throw in some spiritual applications for teachers (after all, this is a teacher’s blog).
Gas is essential:
My car needs gas to run. Duh. If my car’s gas tank is empty, I’m not going anywhere. No input of fuel, no performance.
I’ve taught children in one capacity or another (I won’t bore you with the list…it’s way too long) for over fifty years. I’ve had my fair share of highs and, yes, my fair share of lows. I love children but let’s get real…they can be a challenge.
I admit there are days I spin my wheels in class until I run out of gas. It’s called burnout. Teaching involves a lot of output – the constant giving of myself to the children. My spiritual fuel comes from time spent in God’s Word. When my output of giving is greater than my input in the Bible, I find myself low on fumes until I can’t go anymore.
Quality time in His Word doesn’t mean I spend hours in Bible study. It does involve setting aside a few moments daily to consider His Words. If you’ve never established a Bible study habit, start simple. Read a devotional book to prepare your heart. Or take notes of the pastor’s sermon and meditate further on them throughout the week. (It would bless the socks right off your pastor.)
The Word of God is essential fuel to maintain a Christian lifestyle. Once your spiritual input is greater than your giving output, even on the toughest of days, you’ll remain committed to your students. His Word keeps you strong. (Psalm 119:105; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17)
Oil is essential:
Oil lubricates the vehicle’s engine for a smoother performance. A vehicle won’t run for long if there’s no oil in the engine. Unfortunately, without lubrication you’ll be shopping for an expensive engine to replace your neglected one.
Talking with Jesus about the issues of my life is like oil in my engine. My day runs a lot smoother when I pray. If this isn’t a daily routine of yours, I encourage you to make a list of three or four items you want to discuss with the Lord and do just that. Share honestly with him. Add the children you teach to your list. Remember to listen; after all, prayer is a two-way conversation with Jesus. Worship music might help lead you in prayer as well.
You can’t give what you don’t have to give. The good news is the power that flows from time spent with Jesus will have an impact, not only on your life, but on the lives of your students. You’ll have an anointed reserve on which to draw from. Even Jesus understood the importance of prayer input vs. anointing output. (Mark 6:46; Luke 5:16)
Okay, I admit, the car example is kind of cheesy. And yet, I hope you understand my longevity of teaching has everything to do with my spiritual input. I pray you’ll fuel your spirit with His Word and oil your performance through prayer enhanced by His anointing. (Philippians 4:13)
2 thoughts on “A Teacher’s Input and Output”
Great word miss Lollie. Not just for teachers But for all of us who desire to be followers of Jesus
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I teach an Adult Sunday School class weekly. It has a prepared curriculum which is engaging and great. I’ve always been blessed to have the opportunity.
Recently I have discovered my greater opportunity has been not in the classroom but at work (God’s classroom). Every morning I do a study or devotional. Afterwards, I pray for an opportunity to share what God has given to me. I ask Him for “Just One” daily. I’ve been faithful to share with the coworkers who are Christians and hungry. I will greet them and somehow work it into the conversation. I usually begin with a “Hey, I’m so excited to share with you what I read in my devotions today.” I’ve been doing this for a few months now and now I am being greeted with “What’s the Word for today” or “we should do a Bible Study at work”. Being consistent reaps its rewards. Show up with something to share. Study and ask God for the students. Share from your heart!
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