This week the National Center for Education Statistics released the results of a study, which found that over ninety-four percent of teachers spent their own money on providing supplies and learning resources for their students, with each spending an average of $479. This information is coming to light at a time when many teachers around the country are walking out in search of better pay. What would motivate a person to voluntarily give like that with no hope of seeing that money come back again?
It is a passion for helping others, for seeing them “increase in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men” as our Lord did (Luke 2:52). While teachers may not receive the financial compensation that their labors are worth, they certainly ought to have the love and respect of the communities they serve. One of the greatest and simplest ways that their efforts can be rewarded is by taking full advantage of truth and knowledge wherever it is found.
Speaking of teachers, Jesus said, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old” (Matthew 13:52). Rare, indeed, is the individual who freely shares the wealth they possess with those around them. Perhaps one of life’s greatest ironies is when that treasure is kicked aside and ignored.