Doug Creamer column: Wisdom from friends

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 19, 2022

By Doug Creamer

I have always believed that our words are more powerful than we could ever imagine. I have to be careful with my words because I like to have fun and I am a bit of a prankster. I know that my words can hurt as well as heal. My words can bring laughter and bring tears. The words we choose are important because of their impact on people’s lives.

Recently, I was talking with a colleague about my new job at the community college. I was telling her how much I am enjoying the job and the students. While I acknowledged that I was working really hard to learn the curriculum and prepare my lesson plans, I am really enjoying the whole experience. I told her that I loved being a teacher.

In response, she said something simple yet very profound for me. She said, “You love being a teacher because that is the way God made you.” I thought about her statement for a moment and was speechless. “That is the way God made you.” Even now, the statement still gives me goosebumps. God created me to be a teacher. I love being a teacher. I love doing what God created me to do.

Many people have searched their whole lives to find their purpose, why God created them. I have known my purpose was to be a teacher for most of my life. Of course, there are parts of every job that aren’t fun. But I get great joy out of helping someone learn something they didn’t know … and that applies to both the natural and the spiritual realms.

I was emailing another friend about my new job and how excited I am to teach. She said it was easy to see how much I was enjoying my new job. But then she said something that caught my attention. I explained to her that I was working long hours creating curriculum, lesson plans, PowerPoints and handouts. I am working hard to stay one step in front of my students. I am tapping deep into my creative energy and things are flowing beautifully.

My friend is a very creative person and she knows how that energy can flow. She said it sounded like I was burning the candle at both ends. She said you can do that for a short while, but I needed to consider slowing down and allowing my creative batteries to recharge. If I wanted to maintain the current creative flow I was enjoying, I needed some down time.

I read her words several times. I saw the wisdom in what she was sharing with me. I love and thrive in the creative process, but all work and no play isn’t good for the creative process or for the students in my classroom. I took a deep breath, acknowledged the truth in what she wrote, and unplugged … for a little while.

If our eyes are open, we can encounter wisdom from many different places in our lives. One of the greatest sources of wisdom comes from King Solomon, the wisest man to ever lived. I have been reading Proverbs lately and enjoying my journey through the book. There are so many wise sayings about every aspect of life. He offers many practical applications on how to live everyday life.

There are other places to look in the Bible for practical wisdom. There are many stories which illustrate the benefits of keeping God first in our lives. The experiences in the stories are there to guide us and give us wisdom. Age does not dictate the amount of wisdom you possess, the amount of the word of God hidden in your heart will determine that.

Wisdom alone doesn’t determine your path in life; it also comes from your choices. We know the difference between right and wrong, yet we all choose wrong at different times. We need to slow down and consider our choices and the paths they will lead us down. We can’t choose for each other, we have to choose for ourselves. We can learn from each other and gain wisdom from each other’s life experiences.

I want to encourage you to gain wisdom. There is a difference between wisdom and knowledge; choose wisdom. Wisdom can be gained by reading and meditating on God’s word. It can also be gained from listening to others who have walked down the same paths. God wants you to have a good trip through life, so listen for his voice and learn from His insights. God can and will give you wisdom even from good friends and co-workers.

Contact Doug Creamer at PO Box 777, Faith, NC 28041 or doug@dougcreamer.com.

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