Sinful motivation for teaching well: reputation

Driving in my car the other night, God revealed something to me in the form of a question: If I trust God for the future of my students, why do I toil anxiously? The answer is reputation. I hear the conversations that go on about others in the faculty room, and I want to protect myself in the faculty room when I’m not in there. Thus, I try to limit office referrals, engage students, propel achievement and learning, and all of these are good things, but the motivation behind them is sinful.

Trying to protect my reputation in the faculty room is placing my reputation as god in my life. Reputation is an evil, demonic god that takes. Instead of giving me complete protection in Christ as God my Father does, reputation requires me to constantly work and toil and worry.

So, while it is good in many ways to seek to limit office referrals, engage students, and propel achievement and learning, these things are for naught when sought after out of fear and sin and reputation worship. These good things can completely destroy me (and any teacher) when they take the place of the One true and Almighty God, Who is a beneficent, all-loving, better-than-life Father that accepts us meandering children on the basis of His perfect Son.


About davestuartjr
Dave Stuart Jr. is a full-time teacher who writes about becoming better, saner teachers at He is a follower of Jesus Christ, a husband to Crystal, and a father to Hadassah, Laura, and Marlena.

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