Saturday, February 24, 2007

Finding Focus

Through the glazed over stare of a burnt out substitute teacher, its hard to find focus. All this to say, I've been negligent about keeping up on my blog. I actually need to send out a newsletter soon as well, but at the moment this will have to suffice.
I have now completed reading the packet about the Czech Republic, and the more I read the more I see the desperation of these people. After years of communist repression, the land has now been overrun by consumerism, leaving the people in a faithless moral vacuum. Despite the faith based architectural influences that surround cities like Prague, the people are left culturally despondent. There was a report of a couple walking through a museum and seeing a picture of a crucifix. The girl asked who did such a thing and the guy replied, "I think maybe the Communists." There is a clear need for Christians, and especially those with an intellectual background, to come to these people with the truth of the past, and hope for the future.
I can't say exactly what role I will play, but I do hope to share with my students the love that has been given to me. I've never been much of an evangelist. I know what I believe, and I rest peacefully in the truth at night, but I'm no great apologist. My hope is that, by reaching out to these disillusioned people, I can offer up my heart and my faith in a way that will be real for them.
At Mother's Choice, it was so easy to love. Every time I looked at those babies I could feel God's heart for them. (well, every time excluding in the middle of the night when screaming fits would wake the whole room...) Dealing with abominable second graders has been a new experience for me. They don't fill me with hope and joy. They make me wonder how our own society has become so dark and callused. I have had these seven and eight year olds telling me that they only like to watch R rated movies. They thrive on horror films that you couldn't pay me to watch. Their heads are filled with violent images, and it is reflected in their propensity toward violence and cruelty against one another. After a month working with this class I'm relieved to be done with it, and yet I find myself worrying about them. I hope the next teacher will be able to reach them; to get them to sit quietly; to teach them a thing or two about life, love, and caring for each other.
As I read up, in a cursory way, about the people I will hopefully be serving over the next year, I confess I have concerns. Will I be able to teach them anything? Will they see the love of Christ in me? Will my life inspire them in some way? Will I spend every day afraid of what they are thinking? I have so many questions. It makes it hard to find focus.
I don't know what the future holds. All I know is that this opportunity has presented itself, and I feel compelled to accept the challenge. I want to stretch myself, to see what else God has out there for me. I want to speak to these students, to encourage them to learn and to grow and to seek the hope that only Jesus can give.
I want to continue finding my focus in life.

1 comment:

ruthjanine said...

Sounds similar to china in that material possesions is everything, and in a way it makes sense... what else do they have to look forward to and spend their money on when there is so little joy and hope in thier life. Communism squashes out parts of people that only God can fill and you will be that shining light to them they have been craving for.

I'm excited for you.