… teachable moments

20130919-075421.jpg

I’m sitting at my desk, watching my students come in and interact with each other as they prepare for their day and I’m humbled.

As an educator, I’m not paid much but am reminded daily why investing in these children is more important than choosing not to teach because of salary.

Education is humbling. It’s a big job that causes so many unknown ripple effects & impacts. I teach my second graders quite a bit throughout the year but they educate me, as well. I appreciate how my students and I mold each other.

As you prepare for your day, no matter what it is that you do, walk into your day recognizing that you are in a unique opportunity to honor God in a multitude of ways.
Ask God how you can glorify Him today and don’t shy away from opportunities that he presents you with.

…. here’s to seeing our jobs and careers as opportunities to serve and worship God through how we interact with each other.

Signature

… teaching

20130529-142438.jpg

Never, ever in a million years did I want to be a teacher.

But, here I am.

I enjoy it. I learn from it. I grow. I endure. I expand. I aspire. I am educated and humbled because of what I choose to do on a daily basis.

And, it is hard.

But, most rewarding.

Teaching as a profession is so much more than depositing information into the minds of little people who begin the school year with a lot less knowledge than they end it with.

It’s seeing something special, worthwhile, and unique in a child who doesn’t see much inside themselves.

20130529-150231.jpg

It’s inspiring children who have low expectations of themselves to want greater than they thought possible.

It’s encouraging a few children to do something, most children to more, and all children to their best.

It’s knowing what your limits are…. Knowing your boundaries lie…. So, that you can do as much teaching, encouraging, and inspiring as you can.

For me, I have to eat and have a to do list. If I’m hungry with a load to do surrounding children who have a thousand questions, a few hundred tattles, and not one obedient desire in their little hearts – I easily go left. Far left. And, raise my voice. Fuss. Roll my eyes. Huff. Ignore. And, become incredibly impatient.

That’s not who God calls me to be when I walk into my classroom everyday.

I believe as a teacher, I am to help develop these kiddos who sit in my classroom everyday into people of great character.

I am to model equality. Patience. Grace. Mercy. Joy. Peace. Forgiveness. Love.

And,
Good grammar.

20130529-144816.jpg

I give hugs. I compliment. I play. I model. I color. I create. I correct. I challenge.

I do the best I can.

Everyday.

And, I am glad to say that that “everyday” will end tomorrow at 1:30p.

I hope every teacher across this wide, open country of ours has the most spectacular summer imaginable.

20130529-145439.jpg

I hope you get raises.

I hope you feel blessed, treasured, and appreciated.

I hope you recognize the enormity of the efforts you put into every lesson you teach daily.

20130529-150828.jpg

I hope you recognize your impact and how necessary you are.

… here’s to allllll of the students we teach every year, that grab our hearts, and those few who give you more than a reason to come to work everyday.

They are why we do what we do.

A.

Signature

… we’ll be alright

Being the super planner and structured to a fault person that I am…. I find it very difficult to deal with the fact that I have to wait a few more weeks before attending our adoption meeting… hopefully this one won’t have to be rescheduled. We can do nothing before it, but the life that will begin after it is going to be everything I cannot imagine and full of so much happiness, joy, happy/sad tears, frustrations, growth, incredible fun, and most of all- babies.

I am so ready for this life. I cannot wait. And, I’m ready in a I know I’m not ready way but God’s in control and it’s time so lets go kinda thing. I mean, what in life are you really ever READY for? Nothing. You prepare the best you can and you learn as you go. You’re never ready (or expect) to meet the love of your life – but, look at the amazingness that comes from that! You’re never really “ready ” for college but when you complete HS, it’s time to go. We complete one phase of life and move into the next. You’re prepared, you have knowledge, and then you GO. When you go, you learn, you bump your head, you make mistakes but thank God for all of that because of all the growth you experience.

We were “ready” for marriage because we had everything we needed, had the most incredible counseling that saves me from drowning on almost a daily basis and our counselor/friends have taught us so much about LIFE, Christianity, and spouse-ship.  They prepared us for so much more than just a marriage – they teach us to live out our beliefs and be the people God created us to be.  We’ve survived, we’ve matured, and have cultivated this great partnership. He’s a lot less him, I’m a lot less me, we’re becoming a pretty good “we”. It works.

I know as much as I say I cannot wait for this meeting and everything involved – there is no way we can fully prepare to go through what we are about to deal with.We can read all of the books and talk to every adoptive family on this Earth but the bottom line is we have to experience it and experience set you smack dab in the middle of the front lines, instead of the front row. From what I hear, it will be one of the hugest challenges we’ll have experienced so far but also the most rewarding.

The euphoric feelings of this adoption process are waning. And, I am so totally okay with that. I’m ready to dig my heels in and prepare to bring our little one home. We have to prepare for so much. Aside from the legal aspect of adoption, there is the fact that one day we will have to deal with the truth of adoption, the flip side of our sweet story.

One day our kiddo will understand that we were blessed with them because their bio family did not want them. Yes it’s cuter to say that they “chose a better life for them” but let’s be real – these kids are the discarded and unwanted. Not unloved necessarily, but unwanted. The unprepared for. The unexpected. For whatever reason, they were given away. That won’t be an easy pill to swallow no matter how much we love them. It’s truth that will impact them forever. We have to prepare to endure the same rounds of questions and conversations, the most ridiculous questions and statements, and true ignorance. Along with some real cruelty coupled with doubt sprinkled with kindness. Some of this has already happened, but I’m sure the best is yet to come.

Many days my heart will feel how deeply broken it is and there is nothing to do but cry. The love, joy, and pain it holds is incomprehensible and it runs deep. I’m not expecting this little one to heal my heart. I believe that because of her/him and how they will be made apart of us, there will be some healing. Some redemption. Some wholeness and fullness brought with the joy they will bring. Some sort of opportunity to do and be the good, the secure, the forever.

I’m hoping to raise a little one who will love God, have a servant’s heart, and want to use their gifts to serve God big…. that will be an honor.

The journey to our babies is a million and three steps but I’m so glad that we’ve taken the first and the subsequent million and two will come soon after. I’m sure there are times we will run forward, take a few back, possibly count these steps out in circles, but we will be moving and that’s what I’m ready for. Movement.

I confess that although I’m a planner and I like to know, I’m not one to do much research. I’m not terrified of germs or scrapes and bruises. I’m not going to be the parent who sanitizes the world before taking my child out. Germs help to build the immune system, they’ll be ok. Scratches and scrapes give character and will tell great stories when they grow up. I was asked if I would spoil my kids, the absolute answer is “NO.” Spoil? Why would I do that….. when something is spoiled, it goes bad. There’s nothing attractive, beneficial, or productive about a spoiled child. Spoiled children grow up to be spoiled adults and that’s just gross. There’s something GOOD about a child hearing “no”, having to endure things he’s gotten into but wants to quit, and who doesn’t get everything he wants because he wants it. It’s not productive to be able to do whatever s/he pleases just because. What kind of employee/employer, servant, leader, father, husband, friend will this person be? S/he will be selfish, unable to sacrifice, unable to see beyond their own desires, unable to serve others, and just plain rotten. Ew. Not attractive and will make a terrible husband or wife. And, YES… I’m thinking that far in advance because the purpose of having children is to raise to love & serve God, leave, and form their own homes where they have kids and raise them to do the same. In their homes, these little ones who turn into big ones will have to be able to lead and sacrifice for their families or submit to the one who leads. How can they do that efficiently when they are raised to believe that everything revolves around them, that they don’t have to wait or endure much at all, and everything goes their way all of the time? That’s not life. Certainly not a life that is subject to the will of God – which is often not what we’ve planned for our lives.

So, I cannot wait for these weeks to pass.
I do not know HOW to be a parent to perfection, nor do I want to know. I don’t know how long this process will take. I don’t know how it will effect us, how we will be changed, or how my passions for the lost and lonely will grow. I don’t know how many we will have or when we will have them. I have no idea where this road will take us.

I just hope that we are willing to go.

Signature