You all know how I dearly love my little country school. The community in the woods is truly centered around the school; sporting events for that part of the county are not high school events, but Jr. High because the school only goes through 8th grade. The children from my school feed into one of three high schools in the district.
There are problems with that setup: our kids have a higher drop-out rate from high school, they experience some teasing because of their homes in the woods, they don’t get to start participating in the full range of sports, performing arts and clubs until two years later than the children who attend the other feeder school that is located across the street from the high school, etc.
Two days ago the school board agreed to allow the superintendent to devise a plan, to be presented for approval at a later date, to begin bussing our 6th, 7th, and 8th graders to the other feeder school. The hope would be that then all of the students would have access to the activities allowed by a greater population, they would assimilate better at that age, etc.
There is no official plan yet, they only agreed to allow the research to be done to create the plan. The plan hasn’t been approved. There is no room for more children at the other school yet, so part of the research needing to be done is a plan for new construction.
All of that withstanding, the community in the woods is outraged. They feel as if the school board went behind their backs, etc. So much misinformation is being passed around on social media. The plan isn’t approved yet. The buildings have not been constructed yet. Bus routes have not been changed, teachers are not going anywhere yet. Nothing has changed yet.
But children are overhearing parents who are panicking over the misinformation they have received. Two days in a row I have had to assure children that they are not going to have to meet new teachers, make new friends, or even find different colored uniforms anytime soon. It would take a minimum of two years for any changes to be made. And there is no plan for any of it yet.
I know that my life is in His hands. I know their lives are in His hands. I am praying that they will begin to understand all that being in His hands truly means and that they can confidently go forward knowing that whatever comes can be used of Him for their good.
I am also praying that this post may be read for what it is: a cautionary tale, a plea for adults to see the impact they have on children (even if it is an unintentional outcome of trying to do something in their interest), and a statement of faith.
Faith that comes from knowing that God placed me here, that he isn’t amazed by the goings on, and that He isn’t through yet. So many have responded first out of shock, fear, anger, or even smug take-that attitudes that belie their lack of trust in Him.
I’m not advocating that this should be an emotionless situation, but I am suggesting – requesting rather – that there should be a change in attitude. We are all in His hands. He’s got this.
He will, if we call on Him in prayer, bring about the absolute best for those who are His. Whatever it may be.
He’s got this.
We are so fond of quoting things about God being our anchor when we feel shaken and are trying to bolster our own emotions regarding His faithfulness. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But is it really faith?
I’m used to being the oddball and I guess I am again. I prayed for God to lead me – and I know He did. I prayed for Him to place me – and I know he did. I prayed for Him to use me for students’ lives – and I know He is. So I also know that He will continue to do so – here, there, or yon.
He doesn’t bring us to leave us. He brings us to instill in us the trust in Him that is essential to our existence. We must rejoice that the manna arrives each morning and that the doves fly low occasionally. We must lean more into Him in the good times because we have come to know His faithfulness to us, His steadfast purpose for our good, and His patient leading of us in our weaknesses. For then we are strong in Him. For then we can truly claim Him as our anchor – because He was already tied to us, holding us, securing us.
How can it be otherwise? How could we truly claim Him as our anchor if we don’t trust in His strength, but try to act in our own emotions while incorrectly invoking His name as the anchor that is barely keeping us from saying those words that fly from angry lips and hearts that are hurting? Do we do that because we remember that we were supposed to trust after we have already been mistrusting?
I picture the old joke where the boy wants to look tough so he tells his adversary that they better be glad his friends are holding him back. But then he must tell his friends to hold him back so that he doesn’t have to fight after all. How many times do we tell others that “God will take care of this!” but we are really just hoping God agrees with our take on things?
We must become truly anchored in Him. So much so that we, like Jesus sleeping through the storm, don’t have to be alarmed by circumstances. So much so that we, like Jesus, can speak for those around us saying to the uproar, “peace, be still.”