The Substitute Teacher

Cache with his favorite teacher

I have done a little substitute teaching in my day.  . . . . . I really didn't like it. 

At first, that is.  Because at first, the teachers didn't know me, and so they made me do things like watch the first hour of Remember the Titans  - six times in one day.  Really. 

But other teachers, the ones who knew me and trusted me, would turn their class over to me and let me teach the next chapter in the history book or a fun lesson on poetry, or even a health lesson. Those days seemed to fly by. 

I was filled with purpose and focus. As classes came in and out, I would try a little harder to do a better job with each period. 

It was great. I felt like I was helping the students and having fun with them at the same time. I was learning new things right along with them. 

In the first scenario, I could have easily been a remote control.  Seriously. Pushing play on the VCR player was the extent of the challenge I faced that day. (Yes, VCR - I am that old) 

I recently was asked to speak as a fill-in for someone who couldn't make it on the day they needed her to, and that got me thinking about substitute teaching again. 

I wondered if I was asked to substitute teach for Jesus, how I would do. Don't get me wrong, I have no delusions of grandeur here.

Isn't that what the Church is, in a way? The substitute for Jesus here on earth while he's away? Thanks to the Holy Spirit dwelling within us, we are His body. 

  "And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way." Ephesians 1:22-23

So, if my experiences as a substitute are any indication, here's a test to find out if you are the kind of substitute who just watches movies all day, or the one He has trusted to teach others. 

Are you bored and under utilized? Or do you have focus and purpose? 
Are you having fun, being challenged and helping others while you learn more? 

Just checking. 

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