You Can’t Be A Teacher Until You’ve Been A Student

Back again for part three of my thoughts on our role in building the Kingdom of God here on Earth. If you haven’t yet, then I’d recommend reading part 1 and part 2 first. Today, I want to look at what we can do once we’ve heard the call and begun trying to actually answer it. This is definitely about learning to crawl before we walk, and walk before we run. So often, our enthusiasm can become our downfall. The feeling of joy that come with an awareness of our purpose is intoxicating. If we think back to when the Faith really became real to us, how did we respond? Probably, if you’re like me, by annoying a bunch of people around us. No matter what the conversation was when we joined, it became about God and the Faith. It’s not a bad thing! It’s great that we have that passion and excitement! BUUUUUUUUT, if our goal is really and truly winning souls for Christ, it’s not necessarily the most effective strategy.

Looking back to the example set by Christ and the Twelve. When Christ called them to follow Him, that’s exactly what they had to do. They weren’t immediately sent out two by two. They weren’t tasked with preaching to the crowds. They sat at the feet of the Master. They were disciples before apostles. The word disciple literally means student, and so they were. They heard the same messages and parables as the rest of those who were drawn to Christ, and then got individual attention. So many times, after a parable was shared, Christ brought them in for a further explanation and reflection on the meaning. He was training them, letting them see and hear things that they would need to carry out the mission He knew was coming for them. Only after they had spent time following Him, talking to Him, learning from Him, did He finally send them out.

We don’t have the opportunity to literally walk with Christ here on Earth, but the model remains the same. If you have heard His call, spend time developing the knowledge and the skills needed to respond. Find a mentor, someone who is doing something similar to what you hope to do, and sit at their feet. Learn from them. Devote yourself to prayer, since you will absolutely need the guidance of the true Master to make sure you aren’t losing sight of the real Mission. You’re going to waver, there will be tons of temptations and distractions, and you won’t be strong enough to resist them on your own. The answer, as always, is to go to Christ.

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