Posts Tagged With: school

Impossible Dream

2 Chronicles 24:20-28:21

“The LORD is able to give you much more than this.” 2 Chronicles 25:9

One day when I was in Kindergarten, or there abouts, my mom said something to me that would stick with me forever. She said, “Honey, I think you’d make a really good teacher someday.” I can’t remember exactly how old I was at the time, but I remember how it made me feel when she said it. It felt like I’d been hit by a lightning bolt of revelation. I certainly wouldn’t have described it that way at the time mind you, I was like, 6. But more than anything I remember that feeling coming from deep inside me that she had said something deep and right. In that moment I knew that I wanted to be a teacher. And from that moment on that’s all I’ve ever wanted to be. But at the time that this dream of teaching was born “I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.” (1 Corinthians 13:11) I was a child in elementary school, surrounded with women who taught elementary school and seemed to really love me for me. At the time that was all the higher I was able to dream because I didn’t know any differently.

As I grew the dream to be an elementary teacher solidified and become firm in my mind. I was going to be an elementary teacher. Period. When I got to high school all my friends knew that I wanted to teach elementary school. One of my friends went so far as to tease me that I should work with the Kindergarteners because they would be the only ones I could teach that would be shorter than me and take me seriously. (I’m 5 foot 2… on a good day.) I hated his taunt and vowed to *never* teach little kids.

Once I made it to college and I was studying at Purdue to be an elementary teacher, when something interesting started happening. There was this desire birthed inside me that was different from the original dream. I remember the classroom, the teacher, the other students in the room when the revelation started. I realized that I wanted to teach the building blocks of life. I wanted to teach them how to take a good test, how to be a good friend, how to survive in life. I wanted to teach so much more than what they were offering me to teach. I wanted to teach about LIFE more than math or reading or spelling.

So while I was still on my path to be the awesome elementary teacher I had always dreamed of being, there was disquiet in my soul about it now. Without my realizing it, the dream had changed. While I still desperately wanted to teach, I wasn’t exactly sure that elementary school was the right place for me anymore. But I was a semester or two from graduating, and I still wanted to teach so I carried on with my studies and graduated.

Just before graduation September 11th hit and changed our world forever. My husband and I had been married just over a year at that point and were considering having a baby. Then the towers fell and world was suddenly plunged into a darkness we had never experienced before. And the only thought in my head was, “how can we bring a child into a world like this?” But then God countered with, “If people like you never bring children of light into this world it will always be dark.” And by the time I walked across the stage at graduation I was fully pregnant. We moved back home to be close to our parents and I applied for a job at the local elementary school where they all knew and loved me. I got an interview fairly easily. But then the unthinkable happened. I was admitted into the hospital at 33 weeks gestation for pre-ecclampsia (high blood pressure). I was there for about a week before our son Gabriel was born.

He was born the day before my interview. I didn’t get the only job they had available to me. The door to that particular dream had officially shut. And really, I was OK with it. Mostly because at the time I was still battling for my life! But I’ll have to tell you more about that part later.

Gabe was about six months old when a daycare center opened up the next town over. We needed extra income and it was the ONLY thing for a teacher in the area. I applied and the owner thought she had died and gone to heaven. She couldn’t believe I wanted a job there instead of at the elementary school. I explained that there was nothing for me there and she snatched me up like a hot pancake fresh off the griddle. I was promoted to daycare director within a month of working there. And I LOVED it. Here I had been swearing I would NEVER work with little kids and now I was working with toddlers every day and thinking it was the best thing since sliced bread.

Shortly after settling into my role as director we moved again. This time, to Glendale Heights, a suburb of Chicago, so that my husband could go back to school to be a mechanic. While there I tried my best to get a subbing job at the school that was located in our back yard but they weren’t hiring at the time. Imagine that. But I did manage to get a job in a local daycare center as a floating substitute. Except two weeks before I was set to start they had 15 kids enroll, this is absolutely unheard of. So they needed to open up a new classroom and guess who got to teach it. ME! I was in heaven. For the first time I had my own classroom, my own students, I was a real teacher. I was in love.

For the next five years I taught in three different preschool daycares and loved almost every second of it. I didn’t stay at that first one very long though because it was a corporate daycare and I could feel God calling me to a church daycare down the street.

There I was teaching children the true building blocks of life; both the physical ones and the spiritual ones. I was living the dream. But it wasn’t anything like the dream I had first started dreaming. It had grown and changed as I grew and changed and learned more about myself and who God was calling me to be.

Eventually I risked death once more in order to have our baby girl and my husband and I both could feel the Holy Spirit nudging us to take the financial plunge and have me stay home with the kids.

And this is where things really started changing. That first year home with a newborn was one of the hardest in my life. We had a new house, a new baby, I had a new job, it was crazy to say the least. But I had one salvation; our local women’s Bible study. That weekly meeting kept me sane through the chaos. But more than that, it was through that Bible study that God awakened something new in me. While I had always loved the LORD and had a relationship with Him; it was time to kick the teaching dream into real high gear. So He reawakened my dream and love for writing. A dream so dead in my life that I had completely forgotten I had had it in the first place. When I announced on Facebook that I was writing a book about God and sex (True Intimacy) I had a friend from middle school tell me that she still had all my short stories from that time. Stories I didn’t even remember writing she had kept for over ten years!

Even before I met my husband, I had dreamt of being a writer, a good one. It was a dream that I hardly even entertained because at that point it didn’t fit with my larger and longer lived dream of being an elementary teacher. I was still a child thinking like a child at that point. I was literally incapable of thinking any larger than the box I was currently in. Honestly, because I was dreaming up to the sides of the box… but never past what I could see as possibly achievable.

But then I started writing True Intimacy and everything changed. I was still teaching that dream has never died and I doubt it ever will. I was born to teach. I’ve come to the point where I’ve realized that I can teach just about anybody just about anything depending on the circumstance. When I was a child my dream was to be like those teachers I loved when I was in their classrooms. My dream is so different now, and yet completely the same. The Holy Spirit is my teacher; I’m an eternal student in His classroom of Life. And I want to be a teacher like Him in whatever classroom He chooses to place me in. Right now that classroom is my website, my books and my newspaper article. I’m also teaching social media classes at the local library. When I was a child my largest and grandest dream was to have my very own classroom that I could decorate any way that I chose and to teach whatever I felt appropriate. And while I no longer dream of an elementary classroom filled with construction paper decorations that fade in the sunlight, I do dream of souls saved by the Son light. I pray God uses me to bring His marvelous light into their lives. My classroom is the world.

At last count my website has been viewed by people in over seventy countries. My articles are in over a thousand homes in the area weekly with the numbers steadily rising. My deepest desire is no longer to teach children how to take a good test; it’s so much bigger than that. My dream is to teach the children of God how to pass the tests of life when they seem oh so impossible. I want to bring hope to the hopeless through the Word of Christ, because how can they believe if no one ever shares things with them? How will they hear if no one ever tells them? I have a heart for the lost children of God who think they have Him and know Him when in reality all they have is the dry bones of religion and nothing more. How will they know there is more
to the abundant life if someone doesn’t tell them?

Jeremiah 33:3 says, “Call to Me and I will answer you and I will tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” I have lived this more times in the last thirty-three years than I can count! God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we could ask or imagine through the power found in Christ Jesus, (Ephesians 3:20) if we would only believe in Him. God has challenged me over the years to “dream big” and I feel like I have. Yet I know that my dreams still pale in comparison to the plans that He has for me.

He has plans for my welfare and not for evil, to give me a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) “For now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.” (1 Corinthians 13:12) When I was a child, I dreamt a possible dream. Now as an adult I have chosen to dream an impossible dream. It’s a dream that I can’t possibly achieve on my own, not ever. But God has placed it in my heart none-the-less. It’s a dream where I write the books the world reads because they’re hungry for the bread from heaven. It’s a dream where I stand on a stage before thousands of people and lead them through a prayer of salvation followed by a worship and praise that they’ve been holding in their entire lives. I dream for people to KNOW Him like Adam knew Eve, intimately and beyond all shame because they’ve been eternally forgiven and not condemned. None of that is possible without God. Apart from God we can do nothing, but a part of Him we can do everything!

So often I feel like Mary in Luke chapter 1 when the angel Gabriel comes to her and tells her that she has been chosen to birth the Christ child and she says, “how can this be?” And the angel replies, “Nothing is impossible with God”.

Often I find myself praying and thanking God for using me for this or for that and I will say, “Lord, you could have used anybody to do that, but you used me. Thank You!” Do you know what He said the last time I prayed that, “No. I couldn’t have used just anybody. I could only use you.” And I knew that He had a point.

We are all made so uniquely that we all have a unique purpose in this world. We were created to perform certain jobs and functions that only we can do. And if we’re not doing them then who will get them done? If we’re not doing the job that we were created for then that job isn’t getting done correctly.

I was created to be a teacher. A teacher of the Word of God. I know that now. I NEVER in a million years would have known that in Kindergarten. I couldn’t dream that high. I still have trouble dreaming that high. But I know that as long as I keep following the Man with the plans I’ll get there. Somehow. Someday. In His way. Until then, I’ll keep dreaming the impossible dream that the God of all hope gave me to dream. He is a good God who fulfills His promises. No matter how impossible they may seem to us.

What’s your impossible dream?

Categories: 2 Chronicles, 365 Life, Writing Through the Bible in a Year | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

God Intended it for Good

“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” Genesis 50:20

The morning after Gabe chipped his teeth at recess, I called and left a message at the school to let them know that he wouldn’t be in that day because we were going to take the day off to rest and recover from the excitement of the day before. I let them know that their prayers were being answered and that God is taking care of Gabe. His new teeth looked almost better than the first ones did and that the thing we needed to be praying for now was that his two front teeth do not fall out! Now when I left the message I was thinking that only the school secretary that prayed with him would hear it and maybe the other ladies in the office. Little did I know what God had planned for that message! The ladies in the office did all hear it, but so did the principal and he called me to let me know that they were so sorry that Gabe had gotten hurt, they were glad to hear that he was feeling better and that the principal himself was praying for him. He just “happened” to call at the same time that my house started filling up with people bringing over soft foods for Gabe to eat (no solid foods for TWO Weeks for a nine-year old boy is NOT cool). There were 2 Bible study sisters, one of their daughters, and 3 kids when another Bible study sister called on the phone (immediately after the principal) with some news. It was a mad house around here! Women chatting loudly as to be heard over the literally screaming children, ahhhhhh….. my dream come true! I love when my house is filled with LIFE and laughter.

When I took Gabe to school a couple of hours later to pick up his homework and say “Hi” to his friends, his teacher let me know that she had heard the message too! The kids in his class were pretty shaken up by his accident, so she had her assistant play the message on speaker phone to all the kids in Gabe’s classroom. Now I have to point out that the me you read on this website is the me I really am. I am like this all the time. As in, I talk up God and what He’s doing. I see Him working in ways that most people don’t see or understand, and I call it as I see it. So when I leave a message on the absence report line at school sharing an update on how my son is doing I’m going to share about the prayers being answered, and how God kept him from being hurt more than he was. It was amazing, his lip didn’t even get swollen! How in the world do you partially chip one front tooth and practically break another front tooth in half vertically and NOT bust your lip open, bruise your cheek or even get a concussion? I mean really!?! How does that happen if you don’t have a guardian angel watching over you assigned directly from the throne room of God? To be completely honest with you, considering what all came from this incident I am reluctant to give the Enemy any credit for what happened. Why? Because too many amazing things came from it to be anything but straight from God.

Anyway, as I was standing there listening to his teacher tell me about how she could see and feel the tension in the room leave as those kids listened to how God was answering their prayers and that He is taking care of their friend. I even used the word relax in my message and when I said it, it was as if they took it as permission to relax and stop worrying. There are kids in that room that have never stepped foot into a church before or heard God spoken of in that way before… until my son was injured. (Luke 12:3 What you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed from the roofs.) You know what God whispered to me while I was praising Him later about bring used in such a powerful way? He told me that after hearing that message some of the kids in Gabe’s class prayed for the very first time!!! Now I’m sorry, but I have a really hard time giving satan credit for that! I am actually going to go so far as to confess to you that I believe that it was under direct orders from God himself that the “accident” occurred. I’m sure there are some of you out there absolutely squirming in your seats right now wanting to disagree with me. But look at the facts people! Look at what all happened BECAUSE he got hurt. Not in spite of it, because of it. There are so many people praying for my son, that is one of God’s main goals for us in life, to PRAY. To reach out to The light from our darkness. But adults weren’t the only ones reaching out to God for help through this, children, Gabe’s friends were praying for the FIRST times in their lives! I can’t tell you how many times I have prayed for those children asking God to draw them into an intimate relationship with Himself. And He did that through my son!

The night after Gabe broke his teeth, he got up from the couch and his teeth chomped together accidentally, causing him great pain. He ran into his room sobbing and upset. I followed him and asked him what had happened and all he would say was “I don’t want fake teeth! I don’t want fake teeth!” I reminded him that only half of one tooth was fake and a small chip of the other. But that didn’t really help him either. So I took him next door into the bathroom and made him smile into the mirror. I said, “Gabe I want you to look at your teeth, really look at them. Now I want you to think about everything that God did because you broke your teeth. Because you broke your teeth, some of your friends talked to God for the very first time in their whole lives! People all over the place have been praying for YOU and your mouth, which is drawing them closer to God all because you broke your teeth. Because you broke your teeth your friends got to hear about how God takes care of us, and how much He loves us, they may never hear that again. These teeth are BEAUTIFUL! I want you to remember all those things every time you look at your teeth in the mirror. Every night and every morning when you brush these fake teeth I want you to remember how God used YOU and your pain to teach LOTS of other people about how much He loves them! Don’t you DARE be ashamed of these teeth! Not ever! They are too precious for that.” No matter how pain comes into your lives, please please please know that God does NOT allow (or cause) pain in our lives simply for the sake of having us experience pain. He loves us too much for that. Pain is in our lives to mold us into the vessel that God wants us to be. We ARE always in the potters hands, there isn’t a moment when we’re not. There are times in our lives when He is turning us on His wheel and applying soothing water and light pressure to form us in a certain way. But then there are other times in our lives when He picks up a tool that was created to “wreak havoc” and carve out a beautiful pattern or design into the clay of our flesh. The tool may be the one doing the “damage” but ultimately, it’s the potter’s hands holding the tool to do the work that He created him to do. Carving the pattern according to His will, not the tool’s. Personally I find it comforting to know that no matter what is going on in my life, GOD is the one in complete control. That God has the Enemy in His hand, in complete control of him the WHOLE time. At no point am I at the Enemy’s mercy, but at God’s mercy.

Isaiah 57:1-2 The righteous perish, and no one ponders it in his heart; devout men are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.”

John 9:1-5 “As He went along, He saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked Him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus, ‘but this happened so that the words of God might be displayed in him. As long as it is day, we must do the words of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.’

2 Corinthians 12:7-10 “…because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Categories: The Crazy Mom Blog | Tags: , , , ,

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