On Tuesday afternoon we teachers said good bye to our students as usual, and later we said, “See you tomorrow!” to each other. But we didn’t see each other the next day. Nova Scotia has entered a lockdown—two weeks, they say. So school as we knew it has ended for a time. I’m so thankful for how far we’ve been able to come this school term. Hopefully we can even come back to school again for a few days at the end of the term.
On Thursday the teachers all went to school to prepare their students’ books to be picked up and the work continued at home. Here are a few snapshots of that unusual morning.
- rows of book stacks marked with yellow sticky notes
- empty desks
- crayons put back in boxes from the baskets they were in when they were being used
- open file drawers
- a bewildered teacher wearing a look of deep thought
- rows of orange chairs awaiting the morning devotions that never came
- books and papers strewn across my desk
- parents arriving to pick up their children’s books for homeschooling
- yellow, blue, and white paint collected for finishing an art project at home
- scribbled questions for a Bible story I couldn’t read
- left-behind socks arranged for parents to look through
- teachers humming as they bustle about
- binders clicking open and shut
- clock ticking
- footsteps on the stairs
- jokes and questions thrown back and forth
- copier clanking busily
- drawers slamming
- desk chair creaking
- teacher discussion on yearbook and class photos
- papers rustling
- pens clicking
- cellphone ringing
- a dear co-teacher’s hug
- a comfy desk chair I won’t use for a while
- conversations with the moms of my students
- heart-tugs while handing over books
- lost looks at the irrelevant schedule in my planner
- excitement that I still get to teach in private because it’s considered essential care for my student
- afloat in a sea of papers: how to organize thoughts and methods and needs among them all?
The days since have settled into a new routine, and life goes on with its challenges and riches, loaded with the goodness of the Father.
According to my loose schedule, this should have been an inspirational post. So I’ll leave you with a thought that a close friend shared with me recently: “Praise God for the things He is doing in your life.” What inspired me about this was the reminder that God is at work right now, not just in some hazy future. I can praise Him for what He has done so far—as Samuel said in the Bible, “Hitherto has the Lord helped us.” Joy comes as we acknowledge and embrace the work God is doing for us, in us, and through us—today.