Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sewing the Seed (Get it? 'Cause I teach FACS! Ha-ha!)

So I feel like I'm finding my stride. I wish I could find some book or article (that's what nerds do, you know) that outlines the stages of a teaching career. I'm beginning my 6th year in the classroom, and I feel more ready and prepared than I have any year up to this point. I have a feel for what will happen the first two days, I know how to start class around day 3 when schedule changes are final (day 2, if the stars align), and I don't feel nervous about starting. Just ready. It makes me wonder what each future "first day of school" holds. Will this calm continue year after year, or am I just in a good place right now? And will I even be able to hold onto it through October -- through FCCLA membership drives, fair booth construction, county fair day, Relay for Life, fundraisers, parent-teacher conferences, grades due, homecoming, a couple hundred lessons -- will it last? Who knows. But I have learned (read: am trying to) be content whatever the circumstances (Philippians 4:11), so I'll just take it for what it is and be thankful for the present peace God has given.

I'm taking advantage in this moment of calm to prayerfully remember my purpose. I have one of the greatest jobs in the world. I get to teach, and I get to plant. Every day in the classroom is an opportunity to equip my students with invaluable knowledge that can significantly improve the quality of their lives as individuals and as family members. And I get to plant seeds for the Lord. What an awesome blessing and a grave responsibility. Recently I was thinking about how discouraging it can all get sometimes. It can seem like your efforts, your prayers, and your concern don't produce any change in behavior or perspective among students. And then I realized how self-centered and egotistical that view is. The glory isn't mine to receive. God never promised a grand show of change or impact among the children of his that I am privileged to minister to. He just asked me to plant seeds. So this year, I won't worry about the end result. I'll just make sure I'm planting the seeds that God expects me to.

If you have free time, I'd love to be in your prayers. I'm blessed to be in a small, rural public school where many of my students are followers of Christ. But many aren't. I could use wisdom in choosing my words, and I could definitely use all the prayers you can offer to help me live my faith loudly. It's demonstrating those fruits of the spirit to God's hurting and lost children that often make the greatest impact. I want my students and co-workers to see God and his love living in me. I want them to SEE that an intimate relationship with God is the thing in this life that supersedes all else. I want to be a living sacrifice, living each day as an act of worship. But I can do none of that on my own. It will only come by the grace of God, supported by the prayers of those who love me.

Each school year signals a renewing and a new beginning for me. I am so thankful for new beginnings.


  1. Prayers for you ? Done. Thanks for your writings and words of wisdom, Beverly. They go far beyond your and dad did a lot of things right with you !!

  2. What an important job you do! It is one of the most difficult jobs on earth (second to parenting, I think). I pray that you will have wisdom, patience, perseverance, and the right words to say while you are ministering to these youths.....and you are absolutely right; we plant the seeds, but it's God who gives the increase. Have a blessed year!