The Monday before school started, I went into school to start working on putting my classroom together. I was not required to be there that day, but chose to go and get a jump-start on things.
When I got there, I realized I was not the only one with the same idea. I went into the classroom of one of my coworkers to welcome him back from summer. We talked about some of the exciting events of his summer break, and then the customary question came to me. “How was your summer?” This wasn’t the first time I had been asked this question. To some people I have been able to respond “Good, yours?” but mostly I have just been responding, “Interesting. It has been an interesting summer.” Depending on the person, they kind of give me a look like they would love to hear more, but then don’t pursue it when I say nothing more. This reaction was not the case here. Upon my response, this fellow teacher more or less insisted that I tell him more. I felt prompted to do so, and our conversation has been mentioned a few times in my other posts. He responded wonderfully and gave me some great things to think about how I was prepared by the Lord for this time in my life.
Then, later the same day, a student from last year came in to visit me. She had a gift bag in her hand to give to me. I told her she was lucky I was there as I was not required to be there. She indicated that she had come to the school on her lunch break from work specifically to see me, not knowing if I would be there or not. She was out of town the last week of school, but shortly after that decided to put a gift bag together for me, with several sundry items and two beautiful books.
One of the books was shrink-wrapped, so she said she would not have normally purchased something like that for someone without thumbing through it first. I glanced through the books, noticed how incredibly appropriate they were for me, and then with tears starting to well up in my eyes, I thanked her and told her that she was inspired to get me the books, inspired to come see me that day in particular. I then shared with her about my summer, about my husband, about my feelings.
She then shared with me some of her story, about her favorite uncle that is gay (and has AIDS), her mother’s (and uncle’s) abusive childhood (abused by her grandmother), her mother’s decision to take the 2 children and leave her father many years ago, also due to abuse, and many other interesting twists that I did not know about her. She is an incredible girl with a strong testimony. Her brother was also one of my students and is serving a mission. I can’t imagine what her family has gone through, and yet she has turned out to be so faithful and so strong. I was grateful for her story. We learned so much from each other during that blessed visit.
I came home from the school right after that. My classroom was not as done as I wanted it to be, but my heart was full of gratitude and happiness, of an awareness of my Heavenly Father’s love and for his choice to use this young girl as one of his servants to bless my life, and I in turn to bless hers.
5 weeks ago