It has been quite the roller coaster ride lately. It seems that every time there is something exciting and promising happening, something else comes along to make me feel like I am crashing and failing. It is so easy to say the devil is fighting against the good that is happening, but it isn’t so easy to actually stand against those flaming arrows. When I first started this blog, I wanted it to be all positive and exciting; but guess what–that isn’t reality. Sometimes there are struggles and it is hard to get back up. Sometimes I feel like giving up and just want to curl up in my house with all the doors locked and the curtains shut and read a book to forget about real life. Lately, that is where I am at.
Maybe it is just because spring break is almost here and the students are feeling itchy to be done with the school year, but it seems they have started to lose focus and are determined to push my buttons. I am often feeling exhausted before lunch time which is not a good thing when dealing with these students. I wonder quite often if I am making any difference in their lives–do they know I really do care? Does it matter to them that I care? Do they care about themselves at all?
In the past month or so, I have felt one blow after another. First, one of the students knew he would test dirty when his parole officer came, so he took off and went into hiding (test dirty means drugs in his system). Last I heard, he was thinking of turning himself in. He has so much potential but has been caught up in the gang life since he was born–a majority, if not all, his male relatives belong to one of two gangs. It has been a week since we last saw one of our students. He is classified homeless as he lives in a hotel with his older sister–we aren’t sure where his mom is staying, but we know it isn’t with them. Today, a middle school boy told me his girlfriend is pregnant. He doesn’t want to be like his dad–he wants to be there for his child. But he is only a child himself! These real stories tear at my heart and make me cry when I am home and alone. To top it off, my uncle passed away today and it hurts because I didn’t get to say good bye and I won’t be able to have the finality of the funeral since we live over 700 miles away.
Yes, I am emotionally, physically, and mentally exhausted. I have been doing my Martha thing and need to start being more of a Mary. For many of you, you won’t quite understand what I mean so let me explain. I just finished studying a book called “Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World” by Joanna Weaver. Often we spend so much time serving in the name of Jesus but we don’t take time to be intimate with our Lord and sit at His feet to learn from Him. I am studying the book of John now but still feel the need to be more intimate with my Lord so that I can be rejuvenated to better serve Him. I spend much time in prayer for my students and my loved ones, but I do not simply sit and be still. It seems like there isn’t enough time in the day for everything and I have let that part of my life suffer.
But, Sunday is coming–Christ’s resurrection will be celebrated Sunday–and spring break is almost here. I will need to consciously take the time to rest and sit at the Lord’s feet during this break. He will refresh me and give me what I need to continue on.