Prayer: Lord reveal your truth to Christian educators in all our interactions with students and colleagues. Amen
Scripture: Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Corinthians 13:7 ESV
Being suspicious takes a lot of energy! I have wasted so much time and energy being suspicious of students’ motives. “What did he really mean?” “Is it true that she didn’t understand?” “Is he trying to pull the wool over my eyes?” I was exasperated with Todd because he kept saying, “I just don’t get it!” I knew he was bright, and I thought he was playing games with me.
We were battling wills. But today I decided to stop wasting my energy second guessing him. I just decided to take him at face value. When he came into class I said, “Todd, I thought you understood what I was saying, but I realize that you didn’t. I am going to believe you from now on!”
What a huge weight off both of us. I didn’t have to try to figure out what he was “really” saying, and he didn’t have to keep convincing me that he didn’t understand. I broke the lesson down into tiny, bite-size pieces so that he could understand each little segment before going onto the next.
I would do well to take that philosophy to other relationships: with my husband, children, and friends. I don’t have to raise my figurative eyebrows and wonder what the real intent is. I can just believe what they say and save us all frustration.
1 Corinthians 13:7 tells us that love believes all things. In the Greek that means to put trust in or to credit someone, to accept or believe what someone says is true.
It all has to do with respect. How would I feel if someone distrusted what I said? How would I feel if people felt I had an ulterior motive for everything I did?
We are to treat others as we want to be treated. So what if I believe that Todd is telling me the truth and he isn’t? Isn’t it always good to err on the side of mercy? It’s biblical. Love believes all things. I am certain that even my face will look different as I gaze at a student fully believing him or her versus thinking, “Sure! That’s a good one! What other crazy stories do you have up your sleeve?” So, I’m going into my classroom this year believing that the students are who they say they are and mean what they say they mean. As a teacher, I have enough hats to wear without wearing a detective hat as well!
Copyright Cheryl Skid. To connect with the author, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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