Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Faithfulness, Part 1- Jaclyn

Last week, my friend Leticia sent out an email update sharing the mark of 1 year living in New York. As I read the email, I was reminded of different events that had taken place during her first year. Areas in which we'd pray to see the Lord move. Reading that email did something to my faith. It was as though it was a present-day part of the bible. Where I'd just been reading about Daniel, Moses, Joshua...I just picked up that morning reading about Leticia too. The Lord came through for her just as He'd come through for those in the Bible. Every area in which we'd prayed about had been answered.

This email from Leticia prompted me to ask a couple other friends to share a story of God's faithfulness in their life.  If reading stories of God's faithfulness could increase my faith even a little- then I needed to start reading LOTS of stories, as I'm in a place right now of needing to see Him move. And of course, I figured, if it encouraged me, who knows. Maybe someone reading this blog needs to have a couple of 'present-day' stories of God's faithfulness.

With that said, I introduce to you my friend Jaclyn. I've blogged about Jaclyn before because she is just incredible. This summer Jaclyn picked up and moved to DC to take a teaching job. A friend of almost 10 years, Jaclyn is the girl that makes me laugh more than anyone I know. Having 10 years of relationship equity with someone allows you to be comfortable with them and understand when and how to read between the lines during conversation. I pray for this woman every day and my life would not be the same without her. Here is an account of God's faithfulness to her in this season:

I have come to understand faithfulness through Love & Logic.

I am currently a middle school teacher. This is the beginning of my fifth year teaching, however, I am in a whole new ball game. Learning to understand and communicate with humans that are irrational and emotionally unstable is a challenge, to say the least. I have to implement a lot of Love & Logic, something I had heard about before, but never put into practice. The idea is that you empathize with children in disciplining them and deal with it in a logical way, such as not engaging in arguments.

A classic example might look like this:

Me: “Michael, stop kicking Camille’s chair.”
Michael: “I wasn’t even kicking her chair!!”
Me: “Yes you were. I saw the desk move!”
Michael: “That’s because she pushed her desk into mine!”

And so on and so forth. We don’t get anywhere. The whole class is now off-task. I probably don’t win that argument because we’d probably end up dropping it just to move on.

Logically, the conversation might go:

Me: “Michael, stop kicking Camille’s chair.”
Michael: “I wasn’t even kicking her chair!!”
Me: “What did I ask you to do?”
Michael: “But I wa…(cut off by me)”
Me: “What did I ask you to do?”
Michael: “Stop kicking her chair.”
Me: “Great, thank you!”

Anyway, all that to say, middle school kids don’t like to accept the critique the first go-round, even if they know they were doing it. Like most of us, it’s never their fault!

There has been an extended time recently (like say…the past nine months!?), when I didn’t understand why things were happening; why I couldn’t have what I was asking and praying for, for God’s sake! I thought I had been so faithful to what I was supposed to do and then it was gone. Like my students, I was demanding answers but wasn’t ready to hear the reason I was being “punished” because in my mind no reason was going to be good enough.

When this happens with my kids, I usually give them some time during the day and come back to them later and ask if they know why I did this or that or why I was disappointed in them. A lot of the time, they will be able to tell me the exact reason(s), but sometimes they are still angry and refuse to talk. With some of them, it takes a little while longer, and I just have to wait until they’re ready.

During this time in my life, the Lord knew that any answer He gave me wasn’t going to fix it. I wasn’t going to hear and be satisfied. I needed some cooling off time, and He patiently waited. Gradually, as I settled down and became more ready to talk rationally and listen, He began showing me small things here and there. I still pushed back at times (still do!), but I don’t look to Him anymore to see if He’s going to prove Himself. Instead, I look because He already has. He hasn’t changed from when I turned a deaf ear to now. Even when I wasn’t acknowledging Him, He acknowledged all of my words, my thoughts, my tears, my hurts. He empathizes. He loves. He was faithful to stay.


  1. *Amen.....Thank you for your blog and for your friends to take part in this. I enjoyed Jaclyn post on "Faithfulness", and I needed it to remind me that he is right there all the time, no matter what...we just have to be still and listen for His voice. His fingerprints are on everything we do, and all around us....just gotta slow down and look.

    Thanks Minda,

    Love ya~

    Amanda Moore

  2. " I don’t look to Him anymore to see if He’s going to prove Himself. Instead, I look because He already has."

    what a good word. and just an awesome reminder for wherever we are at in life. He is always faithful.

  3. 2 Amandas have commented :-)
    @Amanda Moore- so glad you read! And thanks for commenting!

    @Amanda Brock. Woman. Miss your face. Wasn't that an incredible statement? Loved it. And you! hope you are well

  4. This is so good! It reminds me of that message Steven spoke about how wisdom = seeing things from God's perspective and after we see more 'ends of a matter' we trust more, having more patience and peace. I was just praying yesterday that God would continue to encourage my heart...and this did just that.


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