The Twin Cities Rainbow Chaser

moving across the country…to discover what God has in store

The Source of My Power

I started student teaching this week.  Some people call this an internship or a practicum or something else that may or may not make sense.  At my college, we just call it “student teaching”.  There are a lot of people who were excited about student teaching.  It is the last step to receiving the degree.  The last step in this four-year journey to doing what they all want to do.  Have wanted to do.

I’m not like those people.  I was, at one point in time though.  When I started college, student teaching was my goal.  I wanted to go into that classroom and just immerse myself in the process, soaking up every possible bit of knowledge in order to eventually lead my own group of students to discover all that the world has to offer.  Here I am, though, three and a half years later!  I don’t want to teach in a classroom.  Teaching in a classroom is the most terrifying thing.  I don’t wanna! (imagine a little kid throwing a tantrum…now you’ve got the picture!)

And so, I went into the whole experience with this mindset: “I know I can do this.  I have been through three and a half years of school.  Add to that all of my experience with kids and in classrooms.  All I have to do is use my knowledge and it will all be over in less than five months.  I’ve got this!”  That’s the pep-talk I used on my first day…after crying myself to sleep the night before.

What kind of crack was I smoking?  Did I really think that I could get through the next five months based on the fact that I had been to school and liked kids?  Last Sunday morning, I wrote down one thing from the service: “If I can do it on my own strength, it’s not worth doing.”

In that case, I sure as hell hope that I can’t student teach.

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3. Sunday: Kids!

Okay, okay.  I realize that it has been merely hours since I put up a review of my stargazing/moongazing experience.  But, I’ve gotta go ahead and get Sunday on here…otherwise I’ll be really backed up when Tuesday rolls around since, ya know, I’m unplugging tomorrow.  It will be challenging…especially since I never know when I might get called in to work or another important call/text will come in.  So, here’s what I decided: alternate hours when I can check my phone.  from 6-7 am, I can check my phone.  Then, I have to turn it off for a couple of hours.  Then from, umm, 9-10 I can use my phone.  It has to go away after that until noon…or something like that.  Anyways, that’s tomorrow.  And now…today…kids!

Children’s church was entertaining as always.  Normally I work in the 5+ classroom, but today I was helping out with ages 3-5…and they are hilarious little creatures.  We colored today.  Watching kids color is great.  One little boy was so brilliantly meticulous…his butterfly was lovely!  And then there was the road…we built a road with blocks.  Some boys decided that it would make a book hurdle to jump over…they almost ran into the wall a couple of times.  Oh, and the lemur.

One of the little boys had this little lemur toy.  A lemur–yes!  I don’t know why he had a lemur…but it made me smile.  Kids make me smile as a general rule.  They know how to have fun without holding back.  They savor life and each tiny experience in a way that is nearly impossible once you learn what homework is.  I look at my life and I see all of these little problems (I just ate a whole bag of potato chips; I need to take the trash out; I need to mop the kitchen; I had to work late tonight…).  I don’t look past all of that and see the beauty (I just ate a whole bag of yummy chips; My trash could be smelling way worse–I know because it has; If I wear shoes in the kitchen, I won’t notice that it’s dirty; I have a job!).  You just have to put things in perspective…blocks don’t have to be limited to building…they can be hurdles too!

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Planning to Savor Time

Did you read the post from yesterday?  If not, you might want to go back and do that…it would help this one make a little more sense.

So, I was thinking about that list…reflecting on how to put it into practice…make it real.  Reality is important, you know.  So, I decided that, over the next five days (starting tomorrow–Friday), I am going to try to do one of those things each day.  I figured out on which day I would do each item and kind-of an idea of how.  Here’s the plan:

  1. Friday: Baking.  Like I said yesterday, I’m already planning on making some brownies tomorrow!  It’s my turn to bring “goodies” to church and I decided that I want to make brownies and make brownies I shall!  I’m sure that there will be one…maybe two left over for me…with a nice cold glass of milk.  Mmm!
  2. Saturday: Stargazing.  I was going to start this process today and just hit the road, find a great field to lay in…but the weather is crummy.  So, I found this snazzy website (accuweather.com) and figured out the best night to go stargazing in my area.  I’ll probably take some coffee, maybe a brownie, definitely a blanket…I’ll eventually figure out the rest.
  3. Sunday: Kids!  Yes.  I volunteered to sub in one of the children’s church classes this Sunday (before I knew that I needed to bring goodies).  But, no worries.  I get to hang out with a room full of energetic, excitable, and always entertaining 3-5 year olds!  (Yes, I realize that this will be right after staying up half the night staring at stars.)
  4. Monday: Unplug.  This is going to be the hardest…hopefully I will still feel refreshed and rewarded afterwards.  If nothing else, I’ll go to bed earlier because I “don’t have anything to do”.  Or, I can get started on…
  5. Tuesday: Reading.  Yep.  I need to figure out what book I’m going to focus on.  Obviously I can’t spend the whole day with my nose in my book (I did that a lot in my younger years).  So, how shall I adapt?  Look through cookbooks for things to eat next week.  Order textbooks (ugh).  Ummm…maybe I should even try to write a book!?

Okay, so that’s the plan.  Tomorrow will probably be the easiest day…Sunday will be oober easy too.  The others…well, they will remain to be seen…suffered…er, conquered.  I really want to persevere, though.  Time has flown by this summer and I feel like all that I have done is go to school and go to work…I know there’s been way more than that.  But, work and school have consumed my life, especially these last few weeks.  So, here’s to starting off the new school year right–savoring these last moments of youth…ew, not something I want to think about yet!

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Losing Time

Do you ever get the feeling that life is just rushing by?  Do you ever feel like you want to hit a pause button just so that you have the opportunity to catch your breath?  Do you ever feel like you have missed that one crucial moment that had the potential to shape the rest of your life?

Good grief.  That’s pretty depressing to think about.  I’m in college.  These are supposed to be the best days of my life.  Instead, I feel like the energizer bunny…running on coffee and the drive to succeed…and the hope that I’ll get to sleep when I’m dead.  Seriously.  There are days when I have just had to tell myself over and over and over “You can sleep when you’re dead”.  I will reiterate: that’s pretty depressing.

We have now established how depressing it is to reflect on the rapid passing of time.  So, what should we do about it?  Or–not “we”, I suppose.  What am I going to do about it?  Here’s how I plan on trying (this will get back around to the “lukewarm christian” part…maybe):

  1. Unplug.  I am too dependent on technology.  I’ll admit that.  I was without my cell phone for five hours this evening…near torture.
  2. Bake.  I’m already planning on doing this Friday…and the best part?  I don’t have to eat all of the brownies that I’ll be making.  I’m taking them to church!!!
  3. Go stargazing.  I love stars and since I live in an urban-ish/city-like area, it’s hard to see the stars.  I want to see them so badly though…I’m going to set aside a night to go for a drive, find some darkness, and reflect on the vastness and beauty of God’s creation.
  4. Hang out with some kids.  I’m helping with children’s church on Sunday!  Nothing can renew your heart like the heartfelt smiles and quibbles of kids.  It is their hearts after which mine should be fashioned…yes?
  5. Read.  During the first two weeks of summer, I read six books.  I’ve read one since then.  I want to read a book in the one and a half weeks that I have until classes start back up.  I have several on my shelf…it’s decision time!

Okay.  That’s a nice list of five.  And, now I should get back to the “Lukewarm Christian”part…yeah.  Wow.  Poor planning.  I don’t know how I’m going to do that.

God wants us to enjoy life…yes?  I think he does.  Like any parent, His heart is filled with joy when He gets to see His kids enjoying life.  When I allow myself to get so caught up in the quibbles of classes and the cattiness of work, I lose sight of why I am here.  I am here to revel in the glory of God and worship Him with every ounce of my being.  Gotta get back to the reveling!

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