Let the godly strike me! It will be a kindness! If they correct me, it is soothing medicine. Don’t let me refuse it. Psalm 141:5 NLT
“My meanest teachers were my favorite teachers because they kept me out of trouble.”
While eating at a local restaurant, I heard a lady sitting behind me make the remark. She didn’t know I taught school, but I grinned under my breath. I could relate. Some of the students I thought hated me because of the workload I assigned or because of my strict disciplinary measures later told me I was their favorite teacher.
One of these students I taught in the sixth grade. He loved to talk. Every day, I called him down numerous times. At the time, we had not established the lunch and learn policy for such matters, so he earned a few discipline slips from me. When I left the school, he cried. I couldn’t understand this strapping young man shedding tears. One year later, I returned. He was in high school by then, but every opportunity he got he stopped by my class to speak and give me a fist bump.
Another student I reconnected with on Facebook after having taught her almost twenty years before. When she told me I was her favorite teacher, I thought, I never would have known by the way you acted. Especially when I caught her cheating, assigned her a zero, and sent her on her way.
As I continue to teach, I keep encountering more of these students who like me in spite of my no-nonsense classroom expectations. Like the psalmist who encouraged the godly to correct him because it appeared like soothing medicine, I am the godly one striking these students with challenging assignments and strict classroom rules.
I, too, hated my parents and teachers’ rules—but at the same time, I loved them both. Deep inside, I knew the rules represented boundaries, and I needed those. Without them, I would wander into harmful attitudes and actions. God used my parents and teachers as His representatives. He also used friends who had a better handle on living a godly life than I did.
Rather than disdaining spiritual friends who lovingly call our hands on bad lifestyles, we should thank them as the psalmist did. They have our best interests at heart, and God sends them as instruments in His hand.
Don’t balk when God sends others to call you away from unspiritual attitudes and activities. They are only acting as His representatives.
Prayer: Father, thank You for sending others to lovingly guide us back onto the paths of righteousness.
Tweetable: How do you respond when God corrects you?