This is the week that school starts at the college where I teach. As a college prof I get to claim most of the month of August for the summer–but this last week is decidedly Fall for me. It may still be 90 degrees outside, and the trees may still be heavy with green, but Fall is here for me. The students are on campus, unpacking boxes and purchasing books, and I am a teacher once again.
Yesterday, I spent several hours preparing lesson plans, making sure my course syllabus was ready to go, prepping the course website, and thinking about the semester ahead.
I have the privilege of teaching.
I have the opportunity to speak into the lives of the upcoming generation.
I have the chance to point them to Jesus.
I stood in the empty classroom where I will spend two hours every Tuesday and Thursday for the remainder of the year, and I was grateful. I know there will be conversations and questions and debates and weighty thoughts in this classroom. I felt very small in that classroom, in the best way possible. It is not my classroom. It is His.
God is the leader of these students. He made them and created them, and I have the charge of stewarding their education for a few hours every week, and so I always walk into the classroom with awe and also with fear. Because I know that although I am a teacher, I also know that my own training and skill is not what these students ultimately need. I will teach them about writing, yes, but my prayer is that God will be glorified and that these students will know and love him more at the end of the semester than they do now. I pray the same for myself, for I know I will be impacted by them, too.
Lord, give me words to speak that honor you. Give me a heart that is attentive to your presence among us. And give me a mind that points always back to you, for the fear of the Lord really is the beginning of wisdom.
I start teaching tomorrow. Pray for me? I always need it.