Classroom Lessons of Hope

I finished up the school year substitute teaching for a junior high class last week.

Beforehand, as the time grew closer to that particular sub day I thought to myself, “what on earth was I thinking taking that sub job? School lets out for summer break two days later and those kids are gonna be filled with anticipation!”

Alas my too-late-to-back-out-now teaching day arrived. I made sure my most optimistic attitude wouldn’t be counted absent and I shot up a prayer for a sweet day to take place…

As kids gradually trickled in for the morning to begin I was surprised to be met with a classroom full of quiet, ready to learn kids!!!

What!?? What is this??!!

I was grateful and humbled because this certain grade can be a bit unruly. God was offering His blessing over my simple but genuine prayer request.

After a few classes had rotated through a new one came in…

Amongst them a group of three boys sat at a table in their assigned seats. They quietly talked among themselves which I allowed because they were keeping busy on schoolwork all the while and no one else in the classroom seemed bothered by it.

One of the boys in that group of three is charming but also has somewhat of a bully reputation. I could hear their conversation and it grew intriguing as he made a comment that sounded very far-out and supernatural. Without delay the other two boys (who happen to come from Christian homes) spoke up, kindly disagreeing with him, and channeled straight into their faith and backed up their beliefs by defending the Bible and poured into this misled kid with so much truth…it was seriously a beautiful blessing to witness!! God was glorified!!

Afterwards, because we live in small town USA and everyone knows everyone, I reached out to the mamas of those young evangelists. I wanted them to know of their son’s bold but patient and caring words to this boy and it in turn blessed both moms to get a glimpse of their son’s faith in action.

1 Peter 3:15 is such a good reminder for us to ‘always be ready to give a reason for the hope in us.’

Bible YouVersion photo

God can use any one of us at any moment, in the most unexpected of ways. Because of this we have so many opportunities to point others toward Jesus but we must be familiar with what we believe. We dig into the word with enthusiasm and an eagerness to learn and grow. We come to love our God with a committed relationship and we speak to others sharing about His goodness. As we do so we fulfill our end to 1 Peter 3:15…just like those two boys did.

Our world is much like a classroom…just waiting for answers…let’s show and teach them Jesus.

All I want for Christmas is…

All I want for Christmas is…a “prepared” Mary-like heart and attitude…

I’ve been substitute teaching quite a bit lately.

No worries, my homeschooled kiddos have a couple of amazing substitute teachers on the days I work so they’re well taken care of, academically speaking…Because I’m sure some people are reading this and like, “Gasp! What about your poor homeschooled kids when you sub?”…no worries I can assure (anyone who’s worried about it) they need a break from me, they’re fine! Don’t lose sleep over it. They’re doing great with their schoolwork with or without me at their side.

…Okay that whole paragraph above might very well be my holler of defense in regard to someone who recently hounded me about homeschooling and subbing because they’re anti-homeschooling…people are funny, even if you go to church with ‘em.

I feel better after stating that.

Moving on🙂…Every time I show up at the school it’s always the same procedure: arrive 20 minutes early, sign in at the office, head to my classroom for the day.

There’s always an organized folder with sub-notes sitting on the teacher’s desk, waiting for me to read through so I have an idea and schedule for how the day should run. And on every occasion there’s always papers tucked somewhere in the sub-folder which cover the proper procedures for handling emergency circumstances.

Can I just be honest for a moment?

I never, ever thoroughly read that part of the notes, just a little browse and that’s good enough for me. That’s part of my practical mindset. I get at least a general idea of where the emergency placards are located in the classroom, which the teacher would collect along with the students before hurriedly scuffling out of the room or school in the event of a crisis situation.

In fact, recently when I subbed, I quickly went over the emergency notes and glanced up and remember thinking, ‘K placards are near the door, good deal, it’s not like anything will happen anyway but if so I’d gather my students, emergency placards, and locate the nearest seasoned teacher in the hallway and follow her lead!’

I’ve discovered though that this limited-thinking is not okay, AT ALL, because last week there actually was an emergency situation at the school where I sub so often, where I had just subbed a few days prior. Continue reading “All I want for Christmas is…”

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