Music Teacher

As many of you know, since entering college I have had a very clear and focused idea of what I want to do. Since 17 I have wanted to be a music teacher. Of course I’m down with playing in orchestras, chamber groups, etc… if fact I inevitably will. I enjoy playing music with others. Performing is important to me. However, playing music doesn’t interest me that much. Neither am I naturally gifted or talented beyond my years. I’m no Sarah Chang. I’m learning music because I want to be a music teacher.

Most people assume I’m doing this because I love music SO much. Obviously, I just can’t live without it, so I must have decided to make this huge sacrifice in the name of love and art. Now don’t get me wrong! I lurv music. I dig Beethoven, Bach, Brahms, and Beyonce. I even like gay music like Tchaik and Handel (he’s gay, hahaha). No doubt, music is an awesome art for that it is an world recognized form of emotional communication. However, I’m not studying music because music as an art form impresses me. I want to teach, so I’m studying music.

I am not a genius educator who educates geniuses. There are many amazing masters of pedagogy who can play better than me, who can teach better than me, and do business better than me. However, what separates me from them is the basic fact that, by God’s grace, the split-second-slice that is my life belongs to Jesus Christ.

Here’s a pleasant illustration: I am a vessel to be used by God, a container, a jar. Image that I am a cookie jar in your kitchen. On the jar there is a bright orange sticker that says “Tim, music teacher flavored cookies.” As you pass through the kitchen, you take food from the jar, thinking that you will be getting “Tim” flavored sweets. In reality, you are tasting food that God has filled the jar with. I want to be a music teacher because it’s an area that God has sovereignty provided for me to be a vessel for his work. This is what John Piper calls a “holy ambition.” It’s something that you want to do that God wants you to do. I could be an ordinary music teacher. It might actually be fun and fulfilling. But I want to give God glory in what I do.

“Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6.

Seriously, what a privilege it is to train other people’s children one-on-one. And the chance to be an ambassador for Jesus to non-believing kids who are all messed up from half-crazed, over-achieving, college-minded Asian parents is an opportunity. I’m pretty sure most of you had music teachers: can you think of all those accumulated hours where your teacher could have imparted wisdom, encouragement, and Godly fellowship? Most likely they were trying to improve your skills on your instrument. But to be a music teacher to just improve musical skill is such a temporal and wasted goal. Most students quit anyways, and those that don’t still die. What students need is not earthy instruction, but the love of Jesus and the hope of the gospel. I want my life to be used to share that. That’s why I am studying music, and that’s why I want to be a music teacher.


3 Responses to “Music Teacher”

  1. 1 becca March 27, 2007 at 2:28 am

    hey i like this one. it is a great encouragement to me. 🙂

  2. 2 littlerichard March 28, 2007 at 5:49 am

    sounds good.
    Hopefully an officer will see this and arrest you soon!

  3. 3 alychee April 11, 2007 at 3:51 pm

    I like this one too. It gives me food for thought concerning the discernment of vocation…

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