Well, this week passed with… some difficulty (because there will always be some level of difficulty in life), but God is our helper and he is getting us through. Actually, what I was going to write at first was “this week passed without a hitch”, but then I realized that it’s quite silly to say that because, as I wrote in parentheses, there will always be some level of difficulty in life. But, there was no major external, physical difficulty for me in my life this week – except for maybe getting out of bed while the owls are still hooting each day and heading to work.
I suppose the only other difficulty is that I have honestly been struggling to really connect with God this week. But, I just keep praying little, little prayers of feeble faith here and there (because all it takes is a mustard seed of faith), and I know God hears those, and I have noticed strength and motivation here and there. Last night and this morning, especially, when I “plugged in” to prayer meetings with my church, I felt very much lifted, energized and encouraged to carry on, and most importantly, to keep feasting on Christ for strength. So, although that has been difficult, God is good and faithful, and as I said, I know he is our helper and is getting us through.
A few of my favorite things this week have been the following: reading several different books, bribing my children to speak life-giving words to one another and resist speaking nagging words, getting back into my running routine, watching a bit of the presidential inauguration, and laughing at Bernie Sanders memes (and my mom’s Facebook meme about women’s haircare versus men’s haircare).
Currently, the books I am reading are Rethinking Sexuality: God’s Design and Why It Matters by Dr. Juli Slattery. Also, I am reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (which is the first Harry Potter book). One of my neighbors actually got me into this – he said it’s pretty much a part of the culture now, and so I decided that, as a language arts teacher, I really probably ought to read it so that I understand when others allude to it. Furthermore, I am reading a book called My Life As An Ice Cream Sandwich by Ibi Zoboi, which is a middle grade fiction novel, and a high interest book for students. And lastly, I am reading a memoir by Kristen Iversen called Full Body Burden: Growing Up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats – this one actually looks like it’s going to be a great mixture of narrative and informational text. This will be a perfect mentor text for the writing challenge that is coming up for my students. I am thinking that I will probably read aloud a few excerpts of the book in order to show them the kind of writing that will be expected of them.
Anyhow, aside from reading and teaching this week, I’ve also been trying to get my children to speak good, positive things to each other. They got on my last nerve early in the week – and on each other’s last nerve – and, thankfully, since we had been talking with them about “the power of life and death are in the tongue”, I was able to bribe them and challenge them to practice not nagging each other and instead speaking life-giving words to one another. I know that external rewards won’t ultimately change their hearts, and that’s why I also encourage them to pray and ask God to help them. But, I am also hoping that they will notice the difference in the atmosphere and that will stick with them and motivate them. For this week, I especially focused on the girls. I bribed one with candy and the other with a Starbucks frappuccino. The bribing just might continue into next week and include the boys.
Well anyhow, I am tired and will close this letter for now. I hope you all had a great birthday week and a good visit with family.
Love you and miss you.