This past Friday night (and Saturday morning) was our Secondary “Lock-In” for our middle and high school students, a.k.a. “let’s stay up throughout the whole night even though we desperately want to go to sleep”. As their teachers and the supervision, Brandon and I stayed the whole time, sleeping a couple of hours in the middle of the night in hammocks we set up in the first grade classroom.
These events always remind me of the unique and awesome role we have: Not just as teacher, not quite high school leaders, but a mix of both. We are blessed with the ability to get to know our students and pour our lives into not only the lessons we teach them, but the conversations we get to have with them. It is easy to get caught up in the routine, the day-to-day normality of teaching and going through “the motions” of lesson planning, making copy after copy, grading, having the same “talk” with the same students, making lessons more interesting and creative. Sometimes, it’s easy to allow our daily occupations to be just a job than a mission.
I know my prayer right now, as we are all tired (even more so after a weekend like we just had), a little sick, halfway through our second quarter, and feeling the tension of missing family and friends near and far, is to be fully present and actually engaged. It is definitely possible for one to be present yet not contributing anything to their community. I want to choose to be present and a breath of fresh air to those I am around. Being here physically is not enough. What makes the true difference is pushing your heart to love deeply and try intentionally when our own storehouses are running low or even completely empty.
It’s easy to look forward to “breaks” and it’s not a bad thing to be excited about spending sweet time with family and friends, but, wishing too much for the future just creates a distracted and discontent present.
We are called to so much more than just “making it through our day”. Reading through a devotion from She Reads Truth about our Holy Calling really convicted me in my apathetic, tired thoughts and attitude. If you are ready to be recharged in what our focus should be today, read it.
In the middle of the regular moments of the day, one verse that I need to have written on my forehead and to be reminded of is Colossians 2:6. It says:
“Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”
This requires action, not laziness/getting caught up in the mumble and grumble that is easy to get caught up in, and requires our attitudes to be full of thanksgiving. Instead of being grounded in our limited supply, we need to be rooted in the truth of who Christ is and how that transforms even the simplest interactions.
I am writing this for myself because today is a day I need to hear it. We can choose to be someone who brings light and salt to each place. Or Mr./Mrs. Grumpsville. Yes, the light and the salt require work, but, it is a Holy work that goes beyond us. And lucky us, we aren’t the source of that strength.