Saturday, February 25, 2006

Brick Wall

"I was unsure of how to go about this, and felt totally inadequate--I was scared to death, if you want the truth of it-- and so nothing I said could have impressed you or anyone else. But the Message came through anyway. God's Spirit and God's power did it, which made it clear that your life of faith is a response to God's power, not to some fancy mental or emotional footwork by me or anyone else." 1 Corinthians 2:3-5 (Paul on leading the church)

"Simply because we were licked a hundred years before we started is no reason for us not to try to win." Atticus Finch in Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird

"All in all you're just another brick in the wall." Pink Floyd

Public education is a fickle thing
An undeniably flawed system
with good intentions--sounds familiar.
Where "No child left behind" is a paradox
and "high school" has a double meaning.
Where the students feel like
just another brick in the wall--
The same wall the teachers beat their heads against.
When "one of those days" means the system won
You got caught in the machine again.
But there are these magical moments--
where lightbulbs flicker, mouths turn up,
and they chew on a sense of accomplishment and purpose.
One hundred and twenty-nine souls
enter and leave my classroom each week.
One hundred and twenty-nine.
How can I possible help them all?
How could I possibly reach all of them?
How could I possibly show them that
each and every one of them matters to You
that You have a purpose for their lives,
a reason You created them.
Answer: I can't.
You can.
No "fancy mental or emotional footwork" will do it--
Only You.
In the meantime, with your help, I'll keep trying.
I may be up against a wall,
but I can see it, and it's not brick.
It's stone-each one it's own shape, color, and mass.
Thank You, Lord, for creating these amazing kids
All One Hundred and Twenty-nine.


Julie Smies said...

You must be an extraordinary teacher. I wish my kids had met you!

Baker said...

Thanks for the compliment, Julie! but I'm just doin' m' job . . . : )