Is it possible to call an Adventist who teaches in non-Adventist school an Adventist teacher? Yes, if we define Adventist teachers based on the quality of the teacher and not merely because the teacher teaches in Adventist schools. In addition, not all Adventist teachers have the opportunity to teach in Adventist Schools. Besides, God also sends His missionaries to non-Adventist schools to reach His other children.
How is an Adventist teacher different from others in non-Adventist schools? In my teaching experience in non-Adventist schools, I become distinguished among other teachers when I apply all the qualities of an Adventist teacher.
LOVE AND CARING
The first quality that an Adventist teacher can practice is showing love and care to the students. This is the touch that makes an Adventist teacher different from others. From the beginning, the students feel loved and cared for as people. This is how we win their hearts and lead them to obedience. They will obey whatever we ask them to do when we win their hearts. Love one another (John 15:12).
DISCIPLINE AND COMPASSION
The teacher must give the model of discipline first. For example, being punctual is important, as well as other qualities through which the students can see that discipline is crucial in life. Yet, the teacher must also show compassion. When the students make mistakes, the teacher must easily forgive and show patience toward the students. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you (Ephesians 4:32).
THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN FIRST
In my teaching experience, either in Adventist schools and non-Adventist schools, I always start my class with a devotional thought and ask my students to pray in their own way. It is important to emphasize that God must be the first thing. Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and others shall be added unto you (Matthew 6:33).
INTEGRATING FAITH IN LEARNING
In all subjects, there is always a way to integrate the Word of God in the learning. For me, it is like a hidden curriculum that I include in my lesson plan. My concern for their character building is obviously seen in my teaching. Character building is the most important work ever entrusted to human beings (Education, Chapter 25).
An Adventist teacher must be well-known for her/his respectful moral quality in society. Someone who is respected for his/her humbleness and his/her unique character. While other common teachers work for their own advantage, the Adventist teacher works unselfishly or self-sacrificially and always stands for truth no matter what happens. “The greatest want of the world is the want of men—men who will not be bought or sold, men who in their inmost souls are true and honest,… men who will stand for the right though the heavens fall” (Education, p.57).
God calls every teacher to be His lengthened hand to restore His image on human beings. He cares not only for students who study in Adventist schools but also non-Adventist schools. He loves them all the same and He wants them to be saved. God also places His workers in non-Adventist schools to work for Him.