Teach Them Well

Paul’s letter to Titus came up last week in my reading and listening. It’s been a while since I read it. There’s a wealth of information for leaders and others in that little piece of writing.

If you step back and look at the entire thing, you can see that Paul expects Titus to be a teacher as a leader. Many years ago I read about how legendary basketball coach John Wooden compiled such a winning record over so many years. He was observant of the strengths and weaknesses of his players. He devised ways for them to be successful. He put them in the situations where they could become successful. And he taught them what it took to be successful.

Paul expected the same from Titus. Teach the people well. Put people in a position to be successful. Even though Titus was on an island where the people were evidently looked down upon by the rest of Roman society. But Paul believed in Titus’ ability.

In whatever leadership position that we have, we need to remember Paul’s thought–to lead is to teach. Even in the largest corporations when leading extremely driven people, there is still the need to teach everyone about the mission of the organization (company, church, committee), why it matters, how to behave, where to focus.

We tend to forget these things. Even leaders tend to forget. That’s why Paul is reminding Titus, the person he left behind in Crete to lead the new Christian community there.

The song recorded by Crosby, Stills and Nash years ago keeps popping into mind. “Teach…your children well.” Followed by “Teach…your parents well.” We all have something to teach. We’re all leaders in some contexts and followers in others. When you lead, teach…them well.

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