The value of an encouraging friend

Of all the online, print and other instruments available to give people a glimpse at their skills and to gauge their talent and drive for certain careers, God used my best friend earlier today in a telephone call to illustrate that I’m moving in the right direction to pursue a career in teaching.

Six years ago I lost my job in journalism. Since then the realization that I wasn’t going to get back into that field forced me to search my mind and heart for the drive and motivation for another career field that fits with what I’ve done and what I am driven to do. Teaching wasn’t on top of that list. At least not initially.

Since then I’ve taken a host of different personality and skills tests aimed at helping me pursue the career that best fits my skills, dreams and personality. All the while I continued to ask God to show me where He wants me and where He’s created me to be.

In a round-about way, my friend greatly encouraged me in my pursuit of teaching by praising my skills in my former career of journalism. He did this in a way no academic instrument used to test personality and skills ever could.

Over the past year or so I’ve sought ways to continue my writing, even if I wasn’t being paid for it. Blogging allows this, and my interest in politics and human interest stories has given me an outlet to write about things that interest me. As a journalist my goal was always to make a difference by educating people and helping them to understand what’s going on around them, and to hopefully encourage them to make a difference as well.

My friend’s comments came as praise for how I write and how my words clearly educate my readers. He’s seen my blogs and has seen my facebook posts as one of my facebook friends. His praise was genuine and was a great encouragement to me. Likely without realizing, he was applying the biblical principles regarding how we’re to be an encouragement to others through words and deeds. Then he said that I really need to continue with my efforts to go into teaching because of my ability to educate through the written word.

Teaching is really the ultimate place where one can make a difference in the life of a young person. Not only do teachers instruct and provide knowledge, but good teachers understand how to impart knowledge and help students gain wisdom and common sense at the same time.

Never stop encouraging your friends to pursue their dreams and to find that place where their dreams, desires and skills fit in their life and the lives of others.

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