OK, the 95 theses thing is dragging me down. Maybe next summer. I wonder if Luther got depressed over his? Nevertheless, on to other topics.
   God, Bake and I have been disussing my desire to be a hero. I keep thinking maybe I should get elected to a school board, open a ranch for troubled teens or a halfway house for some other of the downtrodden masses. I mean, after all, we all want our lives to count, right?
   So God points out as I’m talking this over with Him on the way to school, that I should consider where I’m headed. He, somewhat tongue in cheek, goes on to ask if I’ve heard my little chickadees saying they’d just as soon stay at school at the end of the day. Bake chimes in with: it’s not only those who rush toward the danger in an emergency who are heroes, it’s also those who do what is needed, in a pinch, or day after day, short lunch hour after short lunch hour.
   OK, I get it already, I’ll keep teaching for three more years, and then I’ll tutor.
   To the uninitiated, that means I will awake at 5:30 thinking about the A boys in my class who need me to stand like a rock saying, “This far, and no farther.” I will pray all the 45 minutes of the trip to school because when I don’t pray, I function badly. I will always have more to do than I have time to do it in, but I will be prepared when the bell rings, no matter what, because the chickadees need me ready. I will smile and tease them on their way into the classroom because who knows what happened before they showed up at school. I will tell the little blonde to go wash her breakfast off her face before somebody sees and teases her. I will celebrate them getting into their seats ready to learn quickly and quietly. I will dispense Bandaids and erasers. I will feel heads for fevers and supply tooth boxes, but I will not deal with loose teeth. I will invite them into a colorful room full of learning devices. I will teach them 14 math standards and more English language arts standards than that in 180 days, and hope that 80% of them hang on to all of them. I will compete with tv and video games by using puppets and white boards and motions and Powerpoint and websites and partnering and everything else on God’s green earth I can think of. I will brave 100 degree yard duties and parking lot duty in which parents call me a mf for keeping their children safe. I will go to mindless meetings led by … oops, I didn’t say that. I will reward them for any positive effort they make and tell them the same thing as many times as it takes until their light bulb gones on. I will bring teddy bears and telescopes, paintings and totem poles to school so they can learn from the real thing. I will never turn down a hug, and I will search some out. I will keep them safe in games, earthquakes or against intruders. I will teach them what it means to be responsible and the multiplication tables. And I will feel joy upon joy, because God gave me this purpose.
   To my colleagues in the classroom trenches, you are, each one, a hero. Hold tight to His love, strength, truth, grace, courage and wisdom, for with Him, you can do anything, and all things are possible. You are the wind beneath their wings.

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