I don’t have a hard time trying to stay busy. Now I know some would question that; after all, as a university professor, I get the summers off, right? Well, I do appreciate the breather from the routine that I receive in the summers, so I agree—but only in part.
What have I done this summer? I’ve prepared for the five courses I will be teaching this fall at Southeastern University; I’ve worked on a new course I will be teaching in the spring on “Religion and the Presidents” (yes, I have to work that far ahead).
That’s all for my day job. In addition:
I’ve completed developing a class I will be teaching at my church on Wednesday evenings from September through December—that one is on C. S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity and my book, America Discovers C. S. Lewis; I’ve attended two conferences, where I presented a paper at one (which required a lot of reading and preparation) and spoke at a church while attending the other.
I’ve also just agreed to begin teaching an adult class at my church on Sunday mornings, beginning in September.
Oh, and while teaching those five courses at SEU and teaching at my church, I’ll also be grading papers for about 30 high school students who are part of the Classical Conversations homeschool program.
Yes, I stay busy.
Keep in mind this is not a complaint. I love everything I do because it’s all wrapped up in the ministry God has given me.
In the midst of the coming fall semester, I already know, by about late October-early November, I will begin to feel overwhelmed. The temptation will be to start complaining (too much grading; too few students who really want to learn, etc.).
What I need to remember at that crucial time is that every day that I teach a class session, God have given me an opportunity to help direct the thoughts of the upcoming generation. More than that, He has given me the opportunity to demonstrate to them through my own life that God’s love reaches out to us all and that we need to respond to that love.
I’m in the same position as the apostle Paul (and all other Christians, frankly), as he reminds us in 2 Cor. 5:20:
Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.
I’m not just a university professor. Most university professors are only doing a job. For me, it’s a ministry, a calling, a sober responsibility to hold out Truth to everyone who hears me.
I accept this ministry gladly. This year is my 30th year teaching at the university level. It’s been an interesting ride all those years, filled with both high points and very discouraging moments at times. Yet the calling has never been revoked.
The goal of my teaching has not changed:
To equip the saints for works of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, to equip the saints for works of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God, as we mature to the full measure of the stature of Christ.
Then we will no longer be infants, tossed about by the waves and carried around by every wind of teaching and by the clever cunning of men in their deceitful scheming.
Pray for all those who have this ministry that we will be faithful to the calling.