Good lessons from unkind teachers (a reflection on Matthew 23:1-12)

Jesus Please Save Me From Your Followers

All of us have had teachers we’ve liked more than others. I bet most of us have even had a teacher or two we just couldn’t stand. Above all, we like some teachers more than others on account of the kindness they show us. Often the way a person treats us or makes us feel is more important than their expertise. One of my mentors taught me this lesson some time ago, “people will not always remember what you taught them, but they will remember how you treated them.” In today’s Gospel (Matthew 23:1-12), Our Lord presents the scribes and Pharisees as teachers to be listened to, but not as teachers who are kind to their students. We should learn two lessons from this: first, we need to be truly humble in order to receive a good lesson from someone who is unkind or hypocritical; second, we need to be humble and kind so that we can better share God’s message.

Lord, make us authentic teachers in word and deed!

Who are the teachers who have been kind to you?

1 Comment

  1. Mj Hawes says: Reply

    I had a math teacher in high school who saved me from dropping out. There was one I had in the year before who had her favorites and I didn’t like… too long a story, but I wanted to drop out of school. I was told I couldn’t till I turned 16. Well that was the year I got this wonderful teacher, Mrs. McGrath. She was so nice and I started liking school and decided to stay in. I cannot thank her enough! God bless her.

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