Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Not many of us should become teachers.

"Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments will be called greatest in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5: 19).

Wednesday of the 10th week in Ordinary Time. Call the message from our Master and Teacher today "a double-edged sword." Teacher beware! You teach not only by what you say. Every action of yours is closely scrutinized. I have heard people talk about teachers and preachers in these terms: "He is real. He is not real."

How do you react with this kind of warning from St James?
"Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you realize that we will be judged more strictly, for we all fall short in many respects. If anyone does not fall short in speech, he is a perfect man, able to bridle his whole body also." (James 3: 1 - 2).

Are you concerned or discouraged by the warnings? No need to.  We take consolation from the promise of the Spirit:
"Live by the Spirit and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh......  In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.Galatians 5: 16, 22-23).

We are not qualified to take credit for anything in our ministry. Our qualification comes from God,  who has indeed qualified us as ministers of a new covenant by giving us the Holy Spirit. (Cf 2 Corinthians 3: 4 - 6).

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