Childish Choices

ChildrenI’m a grade 5 teacher, and I have to say, ten year olds are simply amazing. They are at such an impressionable age, and they soak everything in. Well…most of them.

As my years pass by in my teaching career and I become more of a veteran at this gig, it is really shocking how many children struggle with social and emotional development. I don’t really know why…I guess it needs to be taught at home, but in my city this is a huge area of need. Instead of spending my day teaching the curriculum, like I should be, I am constantly interrupted by “life” issues that I have to address with my students.

I have many programs in place in my classroom, like ask-three-people-before-me, trying to get them to use the social cue of; look around you, what are others doing and what should I be doing? Or, even to think to themselves: if I was listening, I would know…man, I’ve had to ask for help seven times today, maybe I need to pay more attention.

My attempt is to have them ready for a successful life in middle school by the end of their year in my class, and most years the subject areas suffer because I am dealing with many other aspects of life in my classroom.

As I reflect on my own life, now that I am in my forties, I am really no different than these ten year old students, trying to make it in the world. Do you know how many times I’ve made the wrong choices? How many times I didn’t do what I knew I should have done? We all have choices in this world…but why is it so hard to make the right choice?

One simple word. Ego. We let our flesh take control. Our selfish nature. Our need to be all about ourselves. As I start on my spiritual path…after much of my life gone wrong…I wonder, where would I be if I made the right choices? The choices that I try to teach to my ten year old students. The choices that I am trying to instill in my own children. Would my life have been any better?

I look back at many situations, and, even though I regret many of my choices, the fact remains, I made them and I have to live with them. There is no sense living in the past and wondering “what if?” Instead I have to focus on my future. I have to stop letting evil make me glance in the rear view mirror. What’s done is done. The only thing I can change is myself now…and my future.

Presently, I am in that transition from living in the flesh to living in the spirit, and I have to say, the latter is much more rewarding. If you are anything like me…and my 10 year old students…it takes a while to get to this place. It takes the school of hard knocks to finally make you understand that we are what we choose to be, and we should only be ourselves. Nobody else…just ourselves.

Sounds easy enough, right? Maybe for some, but not me. It took me about 25 years, to make my 360 degree turn back to where I dreamed I would be when I was in high school. Don’t get me wrong! I love my life. I have an amazing husband, two incredible children, a gorgeous home, a great job…my list of blessings is endless, but…there are many life choices that I would change.

Instead of dwelling on all your mistakes of your past, focus on your future, and living in God’s word.  Learn to find the blessing in your blunders! I love the end of the chapter in 2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults and giving instruction for right living, so that the person who serves God may be fully qualified and equipped to do every kind of good deed.”

Are you ready to find blessings in your blunders? Are you prepared to turn to the scripture for your life answers and not our society’s views of how we should be living? Why turn to the internet for answers, when we have the Bible right at our fingertips? To me, the answer is simple…what is your choice going to be?

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