15 December 2010

Control - In a bumper car?

Home group is over for this evening, and I thought I'd share an interesting analogy that one of the other group members shared. She'd been doing some reading recently, and in the course of that reading discovered this gem. Our life can sometimes be a lot like riding the bumper cars at a fair/fete/show. You think you're heading along in the right direction, when something/someone nudges you from behind and you end up "off course". You think, "OK, I can deal with that", so you do, and get back "on course" when all of a sudden you get bumped from the side. So you deal with that detour and get back on track and whammo, you get a thump from the other side. And so it goes. Life's like that. Even when when think we are going in the direction that God has led us, things happen, and so we have to deal with it. Sometimes we get back on the original track, and sometimes those bumps lead us in a totally different direction. Sometimes the bumps are God things, and sometimes they are not. No matter where the "bumps" or "nudges" come from, we can be sure that God will use them to work out His purpose for our lives.

So how does that relate in the classroom? Well, teaching is also a lot like that. You can be really well planned, and have everything "under control", when the unexpected happens. The power goes off. The swimming pool is closed. There's no water in the bathrooms. There's no water in the school. Your teaching assistant has to take an extra class becomes someone is sick. A colleague is struggling and needs you to help out, so you've got 40 kids instead of 20. You're sick. You're an hour late because the roads were flooded. The kids just don't "get it", no matter how you present the information. The activity you planned fails miserably! The list could go on indefinitely, but I won't keep going. Teaching can be like that! Hopefully all these things don't happen at once, but even if they do, somehow the teacher seems to survive, and the children seem to learn something (even if it's just that the teacher doesn't know everything) and sometimes even both manage to enjoy themselves despite the circumstances. The longer I teach, the more I believe God is teaching me to be flexible. He's also teaching me to be sensitive to the needs of colleagues and students, and I pray that I continue to develop in this area, being open to His "nudges".

Life is often "out of control". Does it really matter in the overall scheme of things. Probably not, because no matter how much we think it is "out of control", God truly is in control, and He sees the whole picture! I pray that I'll remember that each day as I seek to serve Him with all of my life, and to be surrendered to His will.

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