Friday, February 20, 2009

What teaching teaches

This coming week I'll be teaching at our Wednesday night youth group. I love teaching for this group whenever I get the chance...in fact, I love teaching whenever I can. However, it's always one of the most humbling experiences for me to prepare a time of teaching, and here's why: vulnerability. When I teach I feel like I'm cracking my heart open and allowing people to see into who I truly am. Personal stories are shared, but that's not where the true vulnerability occurs. I'm truly vulnerable because I'm opening up to people about who I think Jesus is, how knowing him has changed my life, and why I think that makes a difference. I'm revealing my worldview, theology, and faith with others and allowing them the space to respond to that. Which explains why sometimes after I teach I have a difficult time speaking to people. And why when I feel a lesson has gone bad I take it very personally sometimes to the point of tears. And when someone dear to me doesn't seem to care for what I have taught, I feel not as worthwhile. I feel all of that deeply b/c it is one of the only times when I am being completely honest without pretense or expectation. Despite how scary that vulnerability is, I admit that nothing feels better than baring your soul and having that be received. To hear that I taught effectively is also to hear that people understand how I feel about Jesus, why he's important to me, and can get on board with who he is. And that means more to me than I can possible say.

1 comment:

Ric Wild said...

Suzanne, I think I'd like to hear you teach/preach someday.

Students can be really ungrateful sometimes... it's not that they don't care or find what you're saying uninteresting, it's just that they have a hard time expressing gratitude.

Selfishly, this is one of the reasons why I like working with adults more... they actually say things like "good job!"