Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August: Celebrating School Days

From the last few days of July into the first few days of September, "Back to School" days are occurring across America. So I'm thinking...why not Celebrate School Days for the month of August? As a student...momma of students...homeschooling momma...and teacher, I have many wonderful memories and a few encouraging words about this time of year.

When I think of my own school days, one of the first people to come to mind is my first kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Teacher. Oh what sweet memories I cherish of her. She was a gentle, kind lady who spoke softly with an easy smile and crinkly eyes. 

I just adored her. 

She is well into her nineties now...but a few years ago when I got to see her again...all the feelings of a little five year old me came flooding back. 

How thrilled I was when she recognized me and called me by name! How cool is that? Mrs. Teacher was so delighted to see me as a grown woman with children of my own. It was a happy reunion for us both. She was definitely older, but her smiley eyes still danced with joy as she quietly asked about my life. I was so pleased to find her just as I remembered her. 

We had a wonderful chat and as we parted ways...she patted my hand and told me how proud she was of me. I beamed back at her because in that moment I realized how much I still craved her approval. 

Our forever bond was established in August 1974 on the first day of school. And it didn't matter how many students she had then...or before me...or after me...I was important to her because I was her student. It's something that will keep us connected throughout this life. 

It's true that you learn so many meaningful life lessons in your kindergarten year of school. For me, one of them was how to be a lifelong teacher. Mrs. Teacher showed me how a teacher loves her students...connects to them...and makes them feel treasured. And through her actions she gave me a love for school...and teachers.

I had no idea in 1974 that I would grow up to teach my own children...and then...eventually classrooms of students. Mrs. Teacher did not know that she was modeling for me an amazing example that I would reflect on and try my best to emulate when I became a teacher. 

Of course, God knew the plan even then...and he placed me in that classroom with that loving educator at that impressionable time in my very young life to begin the preparation for my own teaching experiences to come many years later. 

That's just how awesome God is.

And I'm not the only one to notice this. Here's what the Psalmist (probably King David) wrote a long long time before I would discover God's wonders for myself:

Many, Lord my God,
    are the wonders you have done,
    the things you planned for us.
None can compare with you;
    were I to speak and tell of your deeds,
    they would be too many to declare.     Psalm 40:5 (NIV)

And Isaiah noticed it as well:

Lord, you are my God;
    I will exalt you and praise your name,
for in perfect faithfulness
    you have done wonderful things,
    things planned long ago.    Isaiah 25:1 (NIV)

What a gift to be able to look back and see the beauty of God's perfect faithfulness in preparing me in Kindergarten for all the School Days to come...as a student...a momma...and a teacher. 

That's something worth celebrating for sure!

Please join me the rest of this month as I Celebrate School Days with you.

Here is my other August Celebrating School Days post:
So You Kid Is Off To College?

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