Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Sometimes in relationships, we see the wrong side of each other.
Redemption is about turning over a new leaf.

Jon found this shell on our cross country drive. Shawn made it into a necklace.

Dave and Daniel rest after a 4 hour hike in the mountains.

The spiral is the shape of galaxies, shells and this unfolding fern.

So much of life feels like an interruption to what we'd rather be doing. I'd rather be gardening or cooking but instead the Lord has called me to write chants and grade papers. In the midst of the myriad of tasks, at the most critical moments, I am often interrupted by conflict. Perhaps it was a careless word, a careless glance, or a careless error but nonetheless, it falls upon me to intervene. Someone has been hurt. Someone has hurt them. What do I do? It's at these pivotal moments where we are the most useful to the actual purpose of our lives; redemption. We think that our purpose is found in our pursuits and our pleasures, but in reality, our purpose is to bring redemption to hurting souls. The interruptions are not interruptions at all, they are the actual purpose of our lives. The children on the playground, the kids in the backyard, they all need to be redeemed from the hurt of conflict, the pain of harsh words. At the point that I choose to focus on them instead of the papers, dishes or plants in my hands, I am actually choosing to be uninterrupted from my purpose. The time of teaching our children how to listen to one another, how to own their mistakes and how to forgive is worth every second. Life is short, not a second to lose. I'm often tempted to ignore the problem or worse, to tell them to be quiet so I can do my work, but that is not the right response. At the moment when a relationship needs mending, THAT is my work. It is not an interruption. I must choose to help them work through it graciously and lovingly.
Today, one of my students was making a priority out of distracting others while I was teaching them about the Persian Wars. I asked to speak to him in the hall. Our conversation went like this:
"What were you doing?"
"I was talking."
"Are you supposed to be talking?"
"I was talking to myself."
"Yes, but the three other boys next to you heard you and were distracted and told you so. Are you supposed to be distracting others?"
"No, but I was talking to myself."
"The boys next to you did not feel that you were talking to yourself, they thought you were talking to them. This looks an awful lot like you got caught talking to them and are afraid of getting in trouble.
Child bursts into tears...
I placed my hand on his shoulder and looked into his teary brown eyes, "Are you crying because I'm right, or because I'm wrong?"
Sobbing, "Because you're right!"
At this point, I bent over and got face to face, "And do you know that this disobedience and covering up with excuses is the very reason that Jesus died for you?"
Sob, sob, sob.
"Would you like to thank Him now?"
"Yes, Dear Jesus, Thank you. I'm sorry."
"Amen." We hugged. "Feel better now?"
"Let's go back to class."
So-called Interruption: 5 minutes
Cost of redemption: Priceless

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