One of the most significant battles in the world history was between the forces of the Duke of Wellington and the armies of Napoleon Bonaparte. The people of Great Britain were waiting with baited breath to find out who won the battle of Waterloo, because whoever won the battle would decide the future of Europe. They did not have telegraph or telephone or radio or television in those days. The news of the battle came to England by sailing vessel to the south coast and then was delivered over land by semaphore. Semaphore was a system for signaling by using flags or arms in various positions, flashed from town to town until it reached the top of Winchester Cathedral and on to London.

The populace eagerly waited as the semaphore signals spelled out the words, “Wellington Defeated.” Just then a dense fog settled down over the harbor as this incomplete message was waved on to London. Discouragement settled over the land. Streets were barricaded. Women and the elderly prepared to defend their country in the streets and fields.

Finally the fog lifted and the signals came through again to complete the message, “Wellington Defeated the Enemy.” Can you imagine the wild delirium of joy that spread like fire throughout all of London? Just like the fog covered up the incomplete message we, as teachers, get fogged occasionally and are robbed of a complete message.*


Read Proverbs 13:17 from your Bible.


The purpose of a “coach” is to move a person from where they are to where they want to be. That was the purpose of a “stagecoach” in the old days. That’s why some people fly in “coach” today. That’s also the reason sports teams hire a coach—To move them to where they want and need to go. As you “coach” the students in your ministry, be careful that your message doesn’t get fogged. Always be clear with your love, your message, and the way you live your life. Has anything been “fogging up” your message to the children in your class? Has anything come into your life that has fogged up your own communication with God?

Prayerfully consider what you have read today. Then take a few moments to pray for yourself, your students, and others with whom you serve in ministry.

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*W. Herschel Ford, Sermons You Can Preach on John, (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Publishing House, 1958), p. 420.

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