Easter Blessings

Action Needed!

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What are we doing in our classrooms to mirror Jesus?

From Google:

mir·ror

ˈmirər/
noun
noun: mirror; plural noun: mirrors
  1. 1.
    a reflective surface, now typically of glass coated with a metal amalgam, that reflects a clear image.
    synonyms: reflecting surface; More

 

something regarded as accurately representing something else.
“the stage is supposed to be the mirror of life”
synonyms: reflection, twin, replica, copy, match, parallel

“his life was a mirror of her own”

To answer this question, perhaps we need to examine the verbs that are apart of our everyday behavior as we go about our school day teaching and interacting with our students.  Therefore, I want us to carefully consider the following statement:

Verbs describing what Jesus did should be verbs describing what we are doing everyday as teachers in the classroom.

After all, Jesus was the greatest of all teachers. Amen?!

As I list these verbs, ask yourself if this is an accurate reflection of you.  If you affirm that indeed, YES!, I am actively and effectively mirroring Jesus as stated, then wonderful! Good for you!  On the other hand, if your answer is woe is me, NO, I’m not doing so hot on this one, then get down to business, ok?!

Here we go…

Jesus LOVES the world.  John 3:16

Jesus GAVE His life.  John 3:16

Jesus SHARES the gospel.  John 14:6

Jesus FORGIVES (and forgives and forgives and forgives…)  Matthew 6:14-15

Jesus SHOWS COMPASSION on the multitudes.  Matthew 6:34

Jesus TEACHES with authority and in parables.  Matthew 7:29

Jesus WEEPS.  John 11:35

Jesus SPENDS TIME with God alone.  Mark 1:35-37

Jesus BELIEVES.  Matthew 6:30

Jesus SEARCHES for the lost.  Matthew 18:12

Jesus FEEDS the hungry.  Matthew 13:14-21

Jesus SPEAKS to those others won’t speak to and… John 4

Jesus SPEAKS truth!  John 8:32

Jesus DEFENDS the defenseless.  Matthew 18:14

Jesus HEALS the brokenhearted and the physically sick.  John 14:27, All 4 Gospels

Jesus PRAYS for others.  John 17:20-23

Jesus HATES sin.  Matthew 27:46-47

Jesus REBUKES the devil.  Luke 9:42

Jesus FORBIDS NOT that children should come to Him.  Matthew 19:14

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These verses are not all inclusive as they are just a small sample of the actions of Jesus. He was always going about doing good, and still is.  His life is an example of continual action.  Is yours?  Is mine?  Let’s mirror Jesus teachers!  Whip out those verbs and get to work!

Until next week, God bless you and stay devoted.

#BeAnActionVerb  #ActionNeeded

 

 

 

Fruit Frenzy, The Finale!

 

 

Now back to Fruit Frenzy, The Finale!

It’s both fitting and ironic, at least to me, the last two outcomes of the fruit of the spirit mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23 are gentleness and self-control, because although it’s actually when we come to the end of ourselves that we inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5) and the land (Psalm 37:11), it looks as if the world belongs to those who exert their will over others.  How can that be?

I submit to you, based upon God’s word, the world’s beliefs are a false reality.

Galatians 5:22-23

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Psalm 37:11 

11 But the meek will inherit the land
    and enjoy peace and prosperity.

Gentleness translated is meekness.  Meekness is power under control – our power, our will, under God’s control. It’s submitting to God’s will, knowing that He rules and reigns over the heavens and the earth and does according to His good pleasure.  He is sovereign!

Meekness is not weakness! When we submit to God’s will, we are strong, because He is strong. Hallelujah!

2nd Corinthians 12:10

In submitting to Him, we not only relinquish control of all things to God, but it gives us self-control as well, in the sense we realize and cry out to God – I can’t do this, but you can.  Help me!  We don’t have to resist, shake our fists, or run away.  We know He can handle it all.  We know that all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His will.  We know He loves us.

In all circumstances, knowing these things, our role is to submit, trust, believe, rest.

 Submit.

Trust.

Believe.

Rest.

(Repeat)

How then, dear teachers, can we apply this in our classrooms and be encouraged?

I don’t know about you, but if you are like me, I continually cry out to God, I can’t do this, but You can.  Help me!  I’m not saying this to assert in any way, shape, or form that I am a bastion of meekness, ’cause Lord knows I have areas in my life where God is still, in His mercy and grace, working on me.

However, if you knew me like I know me, you would know without a doubt, when it comes to the classroom, I need all the help I can get!  Therefore, I am all about meekness and self-control when I stand up in front of my students to teach.  This fact doesn’t bother me in the least, because I believe our calling will only be accomplished when we depend completely upon Him.

Also, how often do we consciously say aloud the name of Jesus (in a reverent manner) during the course of our day?  There is power in Jesus’ name.  There is hope in Jesus’ name.  There is strength in Jesus’ name.

One day, every believing and unbelieving knee will bow and every believing and unbelieving tongue will confess the name of Jesus.  In the mean time, we teacher believers must confess His name to possess all we need to fulfill our calling as well as for every situation that arises in our classrooms, day in and day out.  Yes! Confess and possess….

JESUS, JESUS, JESUS!!! There is power in just reading it.  Imagine what speaking it out loud throughout our day will do!  Sometimes circumstances only allow a whisper, but at other times stating it with power and conviction not only gets our attention, it lets God know we are boldly approaching Him for help!

Meting out meekness in our schools, whether it’s in the hallway, classroom, gym, or cafeteria, will produce blessings we will not otherwise receive if we don’t bend our knees and our wills to God.  God is looking for meek teachers, dear friends.

Likewise, as meekness progresses to self-control, victory is just ahead. Remember the analogy in 1st Corinthians 9:25 comparing (us) saints to athletes?…

25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

Athletes must live a disciplined life.  The virtue of self-control is of utter importance when training to win a race.  In like manner, we too, as teachers, must discipline ourselves to win the race in our classrooms.  It’s not for the weary. It’s not for the faint-hearted.  It’s for men and women who possess control – control of self.

We are in it to win it. We win by disciplining ourselves to be the best teachers in our schools’ classrooms.  Christian teachers ought to be the best all around teachers.  Our standards should exceed what is expected. Period. Amen.

Let’s inherit the land.  The land of the school house is vitally important!  

God bless you.  I pray you have a wonderful summer break.  Abide in the vine, and experience a fruit frenzy, dear teachers.

#MeeknessIsNotWeakness  #BeGentleTeacher  #SelfControlIsAMust  #ConfessPossess

Use It or Lose It! Fruit Frenzy, Continued

Today we continue with our series Fruit Frenzy, specifically the fruit of faithfulness. How faithful are we, dear Christian teachers?  How’s our attitude toward God and others? Are our actions toward God and our fellow man (students) high-yielding (fruitful)?  Our faithfulness will be a reflection of both.

Furthermore, if we are walking in the spirit, then we are living a life of reliability, faithfulness, obedience, and dependability in the classroom as to the call God has placed on our lives. On the flip side, if our fruit has lost its flavor, or is plumb rotten, then we are not walking in the spirit and therefore aren’t reliable, faithful, obedient, or dependable regarding our calling.  Oh me!

I am reposting Use It Or Lose It!, a blog post I wrote a while back addressing this topic. Let’s be faithful to not lose what God, in His great goodness and tender mercy, has called us to do.  How sad would that be? Walk in the spirit, dear teachers, and use the talent God’s given you to be a winner in your calling from Him.  It’s His will! 🙂


Use It or Lose It!

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God places us where we are to accomplish considerable exploits on His behalf.  He has great expectations for us.  It’s written in His word.  Therefore, as Christians, and Christian teachers, we instinctively understand we are to increase what He puts in our hands. Amen?

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Matthew 25:14-30 New Living Translation (NLT) 

14 “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a long trip. He called together his servants, Christian Teachers, and entrusted his money to them while he was gone. 15 He gave five bags of silver[a] to one, two bags of silver to another, and one bag of silver to the last—dividing it in proportion to their abilities. He then left on his trip.

16 “The servant (teacher) who received the five bags of silver began to invest the money and earned five more. 17 The servant (teacher) with two bags of silver also went to work and earned two more. 18 But the servant (teacher) who received the one bag of silver dug a hole in the ground and hid the master’s money.

19 “After a long time their master returned from his trip and called them to give an account of how they had used his money. 20 The servant (teacher) to whom he had entrusted the five bags of silver came forward with five more and said, ‘Master, you gave me five bags of silver to invest, and I have earned five more.’

21 “The master was full of praise. ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant (teacher). You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together![b]

22 “The servant (teacher) who had received the two bags of silver came forward and said, ‘Master, you gave me two bags of silver to invest, and I have earned two more.’

23 “The master said, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant (teacher). You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’

24 “Then the servant (teacher) with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. 25 I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’

26 “But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant (teacher)! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate, 27 why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’

28 “Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant (teacher), and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver. 29 To those (teachers) who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those (teachers) who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. 30 Now throw this useless servant (teacher) into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ 

(Red words are mine for emphasis.)

You now understand the title to today’s post, Use It or Lose It!

I firmly believe we are to be actively seeking God as to how we can be better teachers for Him and His glory.  If not, something’s amiss.  God gives fresh ideas and innovative ways to get the job done each and every year we teach if we are seeking Him.  We do what we can do, and He then does what we can’t do.  He has blessed us with talents, and it’s up to us to go to work and increase what we have received and been entrusted with from God Almighty Himself!

I hope and pray each of us wants to do well in our classrooms and to hear these words…

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…or better yet, Well done, good and faithful teacher!  What could be better than celebrating with Jesus? 🙂

God bless you in your classroom this week, dear Christian teachers! Until next week, stay devoted.

#UseWellWhatYouHaveBeenGiven  #UseItOrLoseIt  #ParableOfTheTalents #FaithfulnessDemandsTenacity

Fruit Frenzy, Continued


                               

                                           Welcome back teachers!

Have you ever been around a student who just makes you feel badly?  Chances are you have, and unfortunately, chances are there have been times when both you and I have acted likewise to a student or two through the years.  It happens, amen?

This week, we are continuing the series Fruit Frenzy, specifically kindness and goodness, and are tackling the question, How can we combat this type of behavior in our students and in us?

Image result for bible verses about kindness and goodness

The answer to that question is really very simple…

We combat ugly behavior in our students, as well as ourselves, with the weapons of Christian kindness and Godly goodness.

Don’t misunderstand me – bad behavior in the classroom must be addressed. The sooner, the better.  Amen?  However, our tone afterwards, and in the days to come, must be one of love and reconciliation, followed up with acts of kindness reaffirming our love for the students under our tutelage (and that God has given us, I might add).

Also, being good to our students on a continual  basis is another recipe for a healthy classroom environment.  Remember, we reap what we sow.  Sow goodness, reap goodness!  Sow kindness, reap kindness!

The verses listed above are practical ways to demonstrate kindness and goodness, not only to our students, but to others we encounter.  Further, if we sponsor a club, a sports team, or are a grade level teacher, we can aid communities around our schools by engaging our students in these very same kindnesses about which Jesus spoke.

Remember, Jesus said we will inherit the kingdom when we do so! What are we sowing fellow teachers?  Food for thought.  Fruit for thought!

#FruitOfTheSpirit  #FruitFrenzy  #KillThemWithKindness  #GodlyGoodness

Fruit Frenzy Part 5 – The Power of Patience

THAT’S RIDICULOUS!!!  Did I hear right?  I did!  A student blurted those words out in a fit of anger after I told him he would have to complete the work he hadn’t turned in for weeks during the free time allotted for students who had finished their assignments.

Needless to say, I felt like a lion about to pounce on a gazelle.  His tone didn’t sit well with me.  At all.


Have you ever felt that way too, dear teachers?  I’m sure you have!  Wisdom whispers in our ears loseth not thy temper, but sometimes our temper doesn’t listen.  Amen?  Which, consequentially, could turn out to look something like this…

Fortunately, I gathered my wits about me and, in a loving but stern tone, stated back to him how nice it was to be given the opportunity to turn this work in and not receive a zero!  He complied. Thank God.  One more outburst like that and I might have actually pounced!

Patient, as defined in scripture and online dictionaries, effectively means the following:

able to accept or tolerate delays, problems, or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.
“be patient, your time will come”
synonyms: forbearing, uncomplaining, tolerant, resigned, stoical; calm, composed, even-tempered, imperturbable, unexcitable, accommodating, understanding, indulgent; informalunflappable, cool
“I must ask you to be patient”
persevering, persistent, tenacious, indefatigable, dogged, determined, resolved, resolute, single-minded;
“a good deal of patient work”

What then does it take to be patient?  Love of course!  The love of God enables us to do all these things and more.

 

And when we are patient because of love, it gives us power…

Powerful promises brought by persistent patience.

Love →→→Patience→→→Promises→→→Power (Repeat)

To be patient is to be powerful.  To be powerful is to be patient.  And love is the key.

Let’s learn to be as patient with our students as God has been with us.  He is patient because He loves.

God bless you with patience in your classrooms this week dear Christian teachers, and may we keep partaking of all the fruit available to us through our Lord Jesus.

#Love  #Patience  #Promises  #Power

 

 

Fruit Frenzy Part 4 – Peace, One Prayer At A Time

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Do you have an abundance of peace?  Without peace we starve ourselves of all the other fruit in our bowl.  Think about it.

Without peace…

…We love less

Our joy is not as jolly

And our patience turns to folly

Kindness takes a back seat

And goodness can’t compete

Gentleness isn’t so gentle, because, after all, now we’re mostly mental

Which makes our faithfulness fairly accidental – it’s hit or miss

And the self-control we kicked in the ditch

Calls to us shouting, Pray! Peace be still!  

Because peace, my child, peace is God’s will. 

So how do we maintain our peace, dear teachers?  Because we all know how quickly we can lose it, amen?  I was asking myself this same question last week while thinking ahead about peace, and God gave me a nugget I would like to pass on to you.

My husband, Keith, sings in a gospel group called Zion.  We were at a benefit singing a few days ago, and I heard another group sing a song by Kyla Rowland called One Prayer At A Time.  That song stuck in my mind like hot glue does to the posters on our classroom walls.

Verse 1:  I prayed for salvation that’s how I first met Him
I’ve seen wonders and great victories
There’ve been oceans of hard times but I’ve come through just fine
I’ve been crossing each one on my knees
Chorus:  Not one time when I pray has He turned me away
What love what compassion I find
At the edge of the river as I step into forever
I’ll cry, I’ve made it one prayer at a time
Verse 2:  Prayer made for healing, prayer for my children (*and students!)
Often praying all through the night
I’ll lay down all these burdens at the edge of the Jordan
And I’ll make it one prayer at a time
Tag:  I can rest there forever in a land beyond the river
And I’ll make it one prayer at a time

*My words

One.  Prayer.  At.  A.  Time.  And another.  And another.  One moment at a time.  One day at time.  Until Jesus comes again!  That’s how we maintain our peace and stay calm in the midst of the storm, whether it’s a crazy classroom full of kids at school or the chaos of trials and tribulations in our personal lives.

We will make it one prayer at a time, so never stop praying dear friend. 

Additionally, have you ever heard the phrase peace though strength?  In the world in which we live today, peace through strength refers to security measures a nation takes by beefing up its military apparatus.  Strength and power are synonymous.

We can do the same!  When we gain strength for battles through prayer, then we will have peace. Therefore, let’s beef up our prayer life, because the enemy is always lurking, and we will keep him at bay when we are on our knees.

Let’s sum it up as a math teacher would!…

Peace = Prayer + Strength 

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A fruit frenzy of peace is found through prayer, dear teachers.  We must partake in order for it to abound in us and our classrooms.  Lord knows, we all need more strength and more power to stay the course, amen?  So pray teachers pray!

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May God bless you in your classrooms this week with abundant peace.  Next week, we will talk about the fruit frenzy of patience.  Until then, stay devoted!

 

#Peace  #OnePrayerAtATime