Posted on 2/2/14

ronniemcbrayer300 green2KENTUCKY (6/2/13) - Curtain climbers. Yard monkeys. Cherubs. Whippersnappers. Ankle biters. Urchins. I don’t know what you call them, but our children have been turned loose on the world. School is out for summer (at least it ends this week here where I live). By the end of summer I’m afraid my description of these little animals will be a bit stronger. I’ll be ready for them to return to the classroom.

Still, I appreciate their euphoria. I can recall the butterflies that formed in my stomach as summer break approached each year: “No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks.” It was sweet release. Now, this does not mean my summers were always easy. I worked on my uncle’s poultry farm every summer from the time I was twelve or so until graduation.

And ironically, it was those hot, stinking chicken houses that convinced me to stay in school and get a college education. But as a kid anything – anything – was better than sitting in a dull classroom doing algebra problems, memorizing Lord Byron, and studying vocabulary words. Even if that meant doing hard labor shoveling, well, you know what.

So, I still get giddy this time of year just thinking about escaping for the summer. But I’m not the only one – nor are my children. The real happiness is found in empty classrooms where teachers are dancing with unmitigated joy.

At least I know my sons’ teachers are dancing. These dear souls will probably be sitting somewhere in a retirement home sixty years from now, telling horror stories about those McBrayer boys. Preachers’ kids are the worst, you know. I hope their teachers don’t tear up their contracts this summer and refuse to return.

It’s been said that if teachers were paid like professional athletes, and if athletes were paid like teachers, our society would be a much better place. Amen to that. But money is not the reason these men and women give themselves to the classroom.

Sure, teachers would take a raise (or two), but they teach for other reasons: They teach because they love working with children. They teach because they are drawn to a particular subject. Or they teach because as a student, they themselves were greatly influenced by a teacher. In fact, influence seems to be the real reason teachers teach.

Only parents and close family members have the kind of unparalleled impact on youngsters as teachers. The influence is incalculable. The Apostle James said, “My brothers and sisters, most of you shouldn't want to be teachers. You know that those of us who teach will be held more accountable.”

Why this higher standard? Because teachers have an extra responsibility, not only as adults that little ones observe, but also as ones who encode and train our children. Teachers are the architects and designers of the future. That is indeed, a great responsibility.

Too many times we who stand behind pulpits or travel to the “mission field” (whatever that means) monopolize the market on doing God’s work. But everyone – everyone – has opportunity to do the work of God. This is doubly true for teachers. Theirs is nothing less than a divine calling.

Sure, there are a few bad apples in the educational barrel – those who do not take their calling or responsibility seriously enough, or who give the profession a bad name – you can find these kinds of folks in all career fields. Yet, all in all, teachers are a heroic lot who deserve our support, admiration, and even our prayers. God knows if I were matched against twenty-five second graders every day, I’d want someone praying for me.

And to my sons’ middle school teachers, a final word before you slip into the rapture of a kid-less summer: My wife and I have one more son coming your way. As he has been cultured by his older brothers, he may be the most challenging one yet. Regular readers of this column can confirm this for you. So accept my apology in advance. I’ll be praying for you.

Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, speaker, and author of multiple books. You can read more and receive regular e-columns in your inbox at

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources. your social media marketing partner

LIKE SurfKY on Facebook - Click here to LIKE us now.

© Copyright 2015 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story on social media.

Most Read This Week

November 24, 2015 10680

Distillery to Operate in Old Graham School…

by SurfKY News
November 24, 2015 7049

Ohio County Most Wanted - Top 10 - November 24

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 6060

Meth, Marijuana, Synthetics Seized during Drug…

by SurfKY News
November 28, 2015 5190

Local Teen Hospitalized after Officer-Involved…

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
November 28, 2015 4978

Woman Charged with Counterfeit Money Leads to…

by SurfKY News

Most Read This Month

November 17, 2015 17557

Ohio County Most Wanted - Top 10 - November 17

by SurfKY News
November 18, 2015 15825

Runaway Teen Returns on His Own

by SurfKY News

Stories Trending Now

November 30, 2015 6060

Meth, Marijuana, Synthetics Seized during Drug…

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 4325

No. 9 Steakhouse Rises from Ashes to New Heights

by Doreen Dennis, SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 2191

Alleged Thanksgiving Day Tantrum Lands…

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 1205

Sheriff's Dept. Arrests 2 Men on Drug Charges

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 978

Pet of the Day - Asher

by SurfKY News
November 29, 2015 911

Puppy Power: Law Students De-stress during 'Dog…

by SurfKY News
November 29, 2015 862

Veterans to Play Key Role in Inaugural Parade

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 782

EDC Entrepreneurial Director Named Vice President

by SurfKY News
November 29, 2015 743

Dave Says - Nov. 29, 2015

by SurfKY News
November 30, 2015 701

Hanson, HCIDA Officials Butt Heads over…

by Tammy Holloway, SurfKY News