Tuesday, May 17, 2011

2011 kicked off with what seemed to appear as landmines everywhere my family turned. These past five months have been nothing short of exhausting, in both good ways and bad. I could rattle off the long list of events in order to show my life as a dizzying array of chaos strung together haphazardly. But I'm scared to do so, for that will only make me dread the next seven months.

Rather than looking back and wincing at the painful process of arriving at May 17th, I'd prefer to acknowledge the ways God has slowly, but surely, led me on the path through those seemingly horrible landmines in order to prevent me from wandering off a cliff.

I've been at home through student teaching, leaving all peers on campus leading normal, senior-in-college lives. But teaching was truly magnificent. God put me at home, and I have no doubt that is where He wanted me to be. I have watched God work miracles in my heart as He provided every companion and confidant along the way.

Yes, this year has been difficult, but as I look at the ways God has forced growth upon me, I must remember that He has led me to where I so needed to be. Rich Mullins, in one of my favorites, sings "Let mercy lead; let love be the strength in your legs, and in every footprint that you leave, there will be a drop of grace." This philosophy has become the driving force of the way I live and work.

Through my teaching, I have witnessed the depravity of mankind in my little microcosm of learning. Trying to teach my students in the midst of their jibing remarks and scathing judgements of one another, I have come to realize my role at their teacher. Never before has Matthew 5:16 rung so true to me: "Let your light shine before men that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven." My life is a constant witness to my kids, and I have never desired a more upright spirit than when I teach. Showing my girls what a true Woman of God looks and acts like is just as much part of my job as teaching my kids gerunds from participles.

These thoughts are far from finished...teaching preoccupied the majority of my time in the past four months, which was good, because most of the world seemed to be crumbling everywhere else. But I've learned not to hope for "normalcy," because more often than not, in a broken world, things never work out how we picture it. These past five months have taught me not to hope for anything in this life, for "my life if hid with Christ on high." Any blessings God pours out on my life add to the abundant life I did nothing to earn, but that God in His goodness grants to those He loves. Each landmine was, more or less, offering me the choice to glorify God for his steadfast love in the midst of an ever changing world.

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