By Casi Herbst
“Persecute me” is written on a sign attached taped to a man”s back. He is obviously teaching a lesson. While he is writing “exaltation” on the board, paper airplanes and crumpled pieces of paper are hurling toward him.
This is the picture on the cover of a new book titled, “Stop Struggling, Start Teaching.” The book, written by Katie Van Dyke and Brad Wilcox, is intended to help church teachers discipline students while helping them learn of Christ and become more like him.
In talking with people, Van Dyke said she felt the general sentiment was that discipline and church did not go together.
“Discipline is not a dirty word,” Van Dyke said. It goes hand in hand with church views. Love and firmness have to go hand in hand. She said she believes teaching what is right and how to behave go together.
The book quotes Spencer W. Kimball in his book, “The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball.”
“Jesus lived and taught the virtues of love and kindness and patience. He also taught the virtues of firmness and resolution and persistence and courageous indignation. There two sets of virtues seem to clash with each other…, yet both are necessary. If there were but one, love without discipline, love without deep conviction of right and wrong, without courage to fight the wrong, love becomes sentimentalism. Conversely, the virtues of righteous indignation without love can be harsh and cruel.”
The book gives specific and real-life examples of how to deal with classroom problems such as: making annoying noises, being irreverent during sharing time, making smart-aleck remarks, having a short attention span, doing things to get attention and tipping back in chairs.
Wilcox, a BYU religion professor, did much of the preliminary research. When Van Dyke, then a graduate student, came with ideas for her master”s thesis, the two decided to work together to produce the book.
The book hit the BYU bookstore first, but within a few weeks will be distributed internationally.
BYU student Gregory McKeown designed the book”s cover and is part owner of the publisher, Ethos. He said Van Dyke and Wilcox are planning on writing other books to create a series such as “Stop Struggling, Start Parenting;” “Stop Struggling, Start Believing;” perhaps even “Stop Struggling, Start Dating.”