The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
2 Corinthians 4:4
When you consider your classroom and teaching day, do you ever wonder, “Why is this not working? Why does the discipline take brief breaks but ultimately never end?” We know that we live in a sinful world, but that’s not it. You plan, you are ready, organized, maybe caught up on grading-ok, no, I take that back-but things never get comfortable. You want to relax. You would like for this to be easy or just easier.
It is not going to happen. In some ways you and your class do start to flow. You know what I mean: they have finally gotten to know you and are overall doing well. But, you just don’t always feel like you belong. You want to fit in. You have developed some great new teacher friends, but you just seem to feel like you stick out.
So, for all of you who feel like oil in water, be encouraged. As a believer, we all feel this way. As our world moves farther and farther away from God, we feel less and less like we belong anywhere. I am reminded of this every time I expect certain behaviors of my students or have a talk with a student to address issues. The god of this age is in the business of filling them with lies, so many times what I am saying to them simply makes no sense.
Quite literally, what enters in my classroom when a non believing student enters is not of God. If a person is a believer, he or she is filled with the Holy Spirit. If not, he or she is filled with something else or nothing, but definitely there is no Holy Spirit dwelling. This means that the student’s actions are not guided by God, but guided by the opposite. So when you get a strange reaction from a student understand that what is in them many times hates what’s in you. Deep stuff…
I pray almost daily that God will go before me and fight battles for me. He knows what’s happening around me in the unseen world. I also pray that God will post angels at my door, and that anything not of God that enters will fear what’s in me. We must remember that God can fight this battle that we cannot. He has already won.
So, here are some encouraging words from the book of Corinthians. Paul knew a thing or two about living in a world where he felt he didn’t belong.
You are a letter of Christ. 2 Corinthians 3:3
Such confidence we have through Christ toward God. 5Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God, 2 Corinthians 3:4-5
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 2 Corinthians 4:16
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. 2 Corinthians 5:14
We are not home yet. This side of heaven we will always feel like we are out of place. This includes in our classroom.
Christ’s love compels us. There are children before us each day that need to see Jesus in flesh. We have this awesome opportunity to shine light and life into lives. Many days I feel like I am not making a difference, but we must remember that as we pray for our lost students we could be the only ones praying for them. And God can do more in a second than we can do in a lifetime. We are to be servants, living letters.
It is not about our comfort. We are on the mission field everyday when we drive onto that campus. And it’s Thanksgiving. Let’s be thankful for our opportunities to be Jesus.