As I listen to one of many worship songs that I’ve recently searched on Youtube, I imagine what it would feel like to listen to any one of my students sing these words. To know that they have the God of the Universe on their side. That they have the Name above all names to trust.
One day I’ll be a mom, and one day I’ll be a teacher. I can already tell you that when those things finally arrive, I’m going to struggle to do my personal best, let alone measure up to what those children need. My hope for all of them is that they can at least have the opportunity to know Christ. He can give them so many things that on my own, I just can’t. I can’t remove their pain. I can’t wave my magic wand and provide healing. I can pray for them. I can listen to them. I can walk with them. But I am not Jesus.
I have an important interview next week. I’ll be flying myself out to do my best to apply for an Alternate Teacher Education Program that makes me want to up my game. I feel prepared. I’m not afraid.
Honestly, if I get into this program, that’s when the real work starts. I can put myself out there and interview, but that’s like an introductory footnote in comparison to actually learning what it is to teach. I just want to know that the ways I want to lead a classroom are legitimate, or to have evidence-based practices for how to do it better. I’m telling you, if I hadn’t trusted in the Lord, none of these things would have fallen in line.
Contrary to what so many people think, teaching is hard. It’s a balancing act between constantly problem solving other people’s problems, creating a support system for developing learners, intensive planning, and organizing. It’s kind of like community organizing and being a service provider combine, except you also have to know and teach content. Balance that with being a fierce advocate for your kids, and it’s no wonder that in many ways, to me, it resembles being a mom.
Either way, I’m happy with what I have. I believe fundamentally that it’s not about racking up accomplishments, but trying to invest more and more in my love for Christ. So regardless, I’m going to be fine. Jesus can’t be taken from me. Regardless of what happens, I’m covered, and there is a limitless expanse of peace in that.
Whether I teach or preach, whether I reach out to people formally or as just another human, I will carry the love of Christ with me wherever I go. I’m going to have a joyous life because I will be free to enjoy it. To have the rest of my life before me (even if by some unforeseeable circumstance, it doesn’t turn out to be long), and to know that I have the option of freedom from pain whenever I want to come to Jesus is a blessing that I am not able to articulate. I don’t think it gets any better than this.