It's Sunday night. A large number of parents and children that I know are gearing up for tomorrow- The First Day of School. We spent the weekend in Lubbock and I listened as Scout and her best friend Reese earnestly discussed First Day of School outfits and their mothers pondered where to buy the perfect shoes to match. I listened as Will eagerly told us of getting the teacher he had hoped for. I listened as mothers discussed the pros and cons of certain kids being in their own child's class this year. I watched as Will and Scout opened their First Day of School treats that I had brought for them. I have listened and read as my friends that are teaching have bemoaned in-service or have explored new curriculum to teach.
But do you know what I haven't done? I haven't created name tags for desks, wondering what funny little people will fill them. I haven't posted class rules on a classroom wall, hoping to lead with gentle and loving authority. I haven't stood at a "Meet the Teacher" night, talking with parents as they clue me in to the quirks and joys of their child. I haven't covered bulletin boards, anticipating what student crafted work will soon cover them. I haven't picked out a First Day of School outfit of my own, something that says "I'm in charge and, yet, totally cool."
I have listened. I have watched. I have read. I have been a bystander.
I miss teaching somethin' awful. I miss having a group of my own to love, to pray for, to teach, to learn along with them, to watch as they grow in knowledge and in character. So I won't go to sleep in anticipation of tomorrow's First Day of School. But I will anticipate next fall, when I might have a classroom of my own again. When I might be in a school that is almost as wonderful as this one. When I will once again have the opportunity to exercise the gifts God has given me and to pour out the tremendous love He has planted in my heart.