i realized yesterday what it is exactly that draws me to teaching, that gives it such weight and importance. no, it didnt come from seeing chubby fingers grip a broken crayon to scrawl their name, nor a flashy smile from the ornery 4th grader, nor the pleasure of listening to a child forging reading skills not only in spanish but in english (though those are some highlights)...it came from a late night conversation with some of the clinic team members, who include my husband, my brother-in-law and pastor and a friend. it happened rather impromptu, just a quick chat after feeding their four kiddos homemade pizza and jello...as we discussed some happenings from the week, there rose again our vision, the vision to form and heal integrally, to raise up and teach. and there it is. teaching is not just a set of questions or themes to learn, nor a curriculum you have to finish. it is the opportunity and responsibility to help form people. its the reality that the way i react to a child`s misbehavior has a direct impact on their values, formation and understanding of how the world works. that everytime i explain to G. in kinder that he may not hit his classmates because it hurts them, and that is not what Jesus wants from us, nor what we were made to do, im planting seeds of peace and kindness where neglect and busyness have allowed the weeds of sadness and loneliness to cover his heart. that when i smile and talk with a student about their accomplishments, how God has given them talents and has a plan for those talents, there`s the opportunity to support a beautiful work beginning. that when poverty, the heavyhanded teacher, leaves a child ungrateful and sour, I can look for grace and patience to redirect this student, to teach her gratitude and the goodness of the Lord.and this applies to adults, teens and children, all of my fellow brothers and sisters. to teach obedience and love and respect...because if they aren`t able to respect and obey and love me, whom they see, how will they learn to obey and respect and love Him, whom they don`t?
it`s a terrifying and thrillingly satisfying realization all at the same time.
8 days, 5 exams, 1 conference, 3 graduations, 8 send-off letters, and many many moments until the end of my first full year of teaching, in Nicaragua Christian Academy. What a ride.