Peace and grace be to you and yours by the One who makes ALL things possible, our Lord Jesus Christ.
The Lord has given me much to chew on these last few weeks of summer vacation. After spending time in Psalms and in Proverbs, I am in the middle of Isaiah and from the first verse to the one I last read, He has a lot to say. But then it usually is like that when I open the Bible.
And now that it is almost the end of lazy mornings, it seems wherever I go these days, I am asked, “Are you ready for school?” Or “When do you go back to school”? Or “Your summer’s coming to an end, how you feel about that?” Well, being a teacher, it is to be expected I suppose. I have not given much thought to the ending of summer in this respect. School will begin and God willing, I will be glad to see the newest crop of students and the prospect of getting to know my students and to teach them is a pleasurable endeavor.
The enormity of the task before me used to cause me to pause and sometimes to despair. But I have since learned that despair is not of God and the enemy is the “genius” behind that emotion. The enormity of the task before me causes me to now pray and pray and pray. And to praise Him who has put me in a position of leadership for His purposes. And that is the key. I am not a teacher to satisfy my own desires, ambitions, and needs. I am a teacher because He has directed me to be so for His purpose….and none other.
I am all too aware of the challenges that lie in wait. There is the condition of youth of course; students so young and in need of maturing that one can only stand amazed and them perhaps remember our younger days with a rueful smile. There are the rebellious ones, the shy ones, the defensive ones, the cheerful ones, the playful ones, and the _______ ones. (You can fill in the blank and we won’t have covered them all.)
They will come hungry, sleepy, attentive, inattentive, indifferent, curious, open and closed. The students the Lord has already planned for you and I to shepherd this next year will be a vibrant mixture of all these characteristics and then some. Keep in mind I teach high school students in the public environment. I know the children my elementary colleagues care for expand these boundaries even more. But whatever the venue in which children are being taught, prayers are desperately needed.
So when the question is raised about school, I smile and shrug with all these thoughts in mind, but how to share with the one who asked? So I share with you.
For those who teach, our classroom is on loan to us from the Lord. He has placed us in that room to love as He loves. If you remember while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8) Such is His love and His sacrifice for me and for you and for them that we too must love these precious children as we teach.
So to each of those bubble gum chewing, can’t live without my cell phone unless it is in my hands, pizza for lunch for life, pardon me while I sneeze full volume in your direction kids that the Lord puts in our path, we need to be mindful that nothing we do or say will last WHEN we try to do it in our own power. (You know being human I do forget who’s in charge from time to time; you know how it is, a regrettable lapse in judgment when you think God needs a little help.)
I am thanking Him because I do not have to do anything in my own power. And neither do you. He is the Master. He is Lord. He is Teacher, Counselor, and a Wonder-Maker. How can we not expect great things?
I ask that you pray for me and all other teachers, for the students and their home situations. Our young people and the adults into whom their care is given are buffeted on all sides by the determined enemy of our souls. We need your prayers. Pray for safety, and for caregivers who nurture and raise these precious children to do so in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord. (Ephesians 6:4)
So if you speak to any teacher before whatever that magical date is that school begins, you might already have an insight to what he or she is thinking as they measure their response to, “Are you ready for school?” This is your mission!
Pray without ceasing
in everything give thanks;
for this is the will of God
in Christ Jesus for you.
1 Thessalonians 5:17-18
Until then, may the Lord bless you and keep you. Shalom.
Copyright 2015 Linda Bennett
Image credit: by BlueOlive on www.pixabay.com, “female-702961_1280,” Public Domain