My off-days have given me a lot of time to think... to think and to read and to learn. Here’s a completely non-fluid list of things I’m learning:
“There are many aspects to the nature of Christ. He is the Good Shepherd, our Deliverer and our Healer. We perceive God through the filter of our need of Him. And thus He has ordained, for He Himself is our one answer to a thousand needs.” - Francis Frangipane
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about God as the meeter of our needs... but also as the meeter of our wants. Proverbs 19:22 says, “What a man desires is unfailing love.” I’ve been looking and the only times I find the phrase “unfailing love” in the Bible is in reference to God. Not once is it attributed to humans. We all desire unfailing love... God is what we want, not just what we need.
I believe that God creates a nagging dissatisfaction in everyone for a reason.... the need that we feel is one that only He can meet. In my 23 years of life, I’ve experienced a lot of loss. I’ve found that God (unlike the world) does not minimize the things that break our hearts... Life involves change. Change involves loss. Loss involves death of one kind or another. Perhaps the most profound miracle of all is living through something we thought would kill us. The good news is that God is not just the best of humanity, He is all-together God. Life has been good - painful at times, but God has always been faithful. I love this verse in Song of Songs, “Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, and come with me. See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone... the season of singing has come.”
I’m also learning that appreciation for His presence emerges from the daily walk - perhaps in the mundane more than the miraculous. How this is done... still trying to figure out, “but He knows the way that I take.” (Job 23:10) Choosing to trust Him in the mundane, and trying to walk with Him rather than begging Him to walk with me.
God made the day. I’m just glad He made me part of His.
Other than a couple of minor freak outs, the first week of teaching has been far less stressful and far more encouraging that I dreamed. To my complete surprise, I was told that I got to have a classroom! My fear of being known as “the cart lady” who children fled from as they heard the creaking wheels of my cart coming down the hallway were put to rest. On the downside, I was left with 3 days to decorate the bare, white walls of a portable building... my “cottage,” as I like to call it. With the help of some friends, my room now looks less like a prison cell and more like a classroom.
My nightmares about my students revolting have not come true... at least not yet... so I chalk that up to a success. Other than some technical difficulties with the projector, being 3 chairs short, and having a pipe burst in my room and submersing my desk in an inch of water, this week has gone really smoothly!
To sum it up, the first week of teaching has been really surreal. It is still a weird thought that I have knowledge to impart upon these kids. It’s a very strange feeling, transitioning from student to teacher. But the more I think about it... my students have knowledge to impart upon me. That’s what’s great about teaching, is that I’m still learning, too. I can’t wait to get to know my students and hear their stories. Many of them have traveled outside of the country and have stories of their own to share. I have been so impressed with my students’ attitudes and awareness toward the need for Spanish in our area. I had one student tell me that she wants to be a missionary... what a blessing that I can be of some help to her as she pursues the Lord’s calling for her life!
I made a new canvas for my room.. one of my favorite quotes from Che Guevara in The Motorcycle Diaries.
As my first day of teaching approaches, I find myselfin need of a little inspiration... and if these two videos don’t scream INSPIRATION, then I’m not sure what else will. I know I don’t teach drama, but that won’t keep me from trying some of these methods.
On my last day of Summer, I was feeling a little crafty. I made canvases for my classroom with quotes from a few of my favorite books that would make sense to be hanging in a Spanish classroom. I’m looking forward to adding to the collection once I buy more canvases, read more books, and am in the mood to craft again... there’s no telling when those three things will collide once more... in fact, it may never happen again.