On Teachers, Dreams, and Birthdays
“I stand convinced that her invitation to write served not as punishment, rather I’d call it a moment of divine intervention for my eight year old self”.
These days I chase a dream that for a while, I lived disillusioned about how to capture and subdue. I imagined (foolishly) that dreams could be born apart from blood sweat and tears. The truth however, I am learning, is that dreams aren’t born apart from these but rather, are nailed down through the very experiences of them.
The dream I chase won’t drop as ripened fruit does from the tree, ready and waiting for me to enjoy. Seeing it come to light will not be achieved by scratching the silver foil from a lottery card, or by wearing the right shoes, or shaking the right hands, though I realize some people live as if this were true. Sometimes, dreams must be wooed, chased, pursued, fought for–wrangled into submission.
I credit my 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. McCleod, with planting this seed. While all the other seven and eight year old’s raced happily during recess, faces red and legs pumping wildly on the swings, I felt only distance and loneliness. Finding her back in the classroom, she looked up from her desk and asked me why I was not outside with the others. I’m sure I answered her with my face to the floor, lips trembling and no doubt, mumbling, (remembering how shy I was then.) She told me to sit down, and to write something. Anything. It wasn’t an actual assignment, more of a suggestion to pass the time. She couldn’t have known she had just handed me a gift. I didn’t even fully know it then.
Any other child in that class likely would have bolted straight back out to the playground, never stopping to look back–for me, this was a chance to breathe. Looking back at this, I considered for a moment, the possibility that her suggestion was meant as punishment, but ultimately, I must reject that thought as all of my faceless memories of her are nothing but encouraging.
Her classroom became a safe house for me during the recess hour. She gave me space to write, to think, to explore without having to defend myself against the dreaded dodge-ball wall, or from the torturous boys who terrorized me with bugs and worms. It was in her class where I wrote my first stories, it was in that school where I won a ribbon in the creative writing contest, it was she who watered and tended to a seed of a dream planted.
So no, I stand convinced that her invitation to write served not as punishment, rather I’d call it a moment of divine intervention for my eight year old self.
All these years later and I have never stopped writing–never stopped imagining through words and journals and letters and stories. I had almost convinced myself I couldn’t chase the dream, but God has been whispering, nudging, opening tiny windows and big wide double doors calling me out to it.
And then there’s this blog–one of hundreds of thousands avaialable on the big wide web and still you read here, and you speak kindness and say to me, “good job.”
I count it all gift. Every last comment and e-mail and grace you have shown to me over the last year.
*It’s my bloggy-birthday, Always Alleluia is one year old. I cannot believe it. This blog, started as an act of obedience, a leap of faith, it has been a gift to me, a blessing most unexpected. YOU have been a gift unimaginable. Thank you for reading here. Thank you for sharing your hearts, your prayers, your sweet sweet words of encouragement with me. I am so deeply humbled and grateful for your kindness.
Counting on, beyond 1000 Gifts:
1035. The hapy end to a long week
1036. Conversations with peers, being treated as such
1037. Help that comes when needed
1038. Good, solid, grace-filled friendships
1039. A clean school room (!!)
1040. The boys building their pinewood derby cars with the Mr.
1041. A year of blogging. A year of stepping out on limbs- how graciously the Father has blessed it.
- Brian Jones published the blogpost Was Jesus A Man That The Early Church Turned Into A God?.
- Serena Rice published the blogpost Prayer on the Wind: Day 24 of the April Poetry Challenge.
- adekunle ojobaro just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Wayne Stiles published the blogpost Quote from Pascal on how to measure our efforts [Quote].
- Adam Smith published the blogpost 21 Things You Need To STOP Saying At Work-Julia Winston.
- Audra Jennings published the blogpost CRITICAL CONDITION Kindle HDX Giveaway from Richard Mabry!.
- Audra Jennings published the blogpost NIGHTLINE’S Dan Harris’ 10% HAPPIER Kindle HDX Giveaway!.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost The Guys Guide to God, Girls and the Phone in Your Pocket.
- Mike Kim published the blogpost #09: 3 Psychological Weapons of Marketing Influence.
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost Movie Producers Donate to Wounded Warriors with Your Help.
- Julio Ribeiro just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Warren Robison just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Gary Weed created a new gallery
- Gary Weed just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Lyn Rossano just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Tina Jagneaux just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Jeremy Riley just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Flashback: How to Stop Victim Mentality and Thinking in Kids and Teens.
- Walter Bright published the blogpost Divine Healing Will Be Fully Realized When Jesus Returns.
- Brandi McElheney just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Blake Atwood published the audio If You Want to be Successful, Stop Being So Accessible | Michael Hyatt.
- John Rutledge published the article New study suggests religion can predict sexual behavior.
- Jeff Reiter just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Candace Andrews just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Blake Atwood uploaded a photo
- Joe Padilla just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Chris Peek published the blogpost Why Simplicity is Necessary to Live in a Story that Matters.
- Blake Atwood published the video 'Theology Questions Everyone Asks' Part II | Gary M. Burge & David Lauber.
- Blake Atwood published the video 'Theology Questions Everyone Asks' | Gary M. Burge & David Lauber.
- Blake Atwood published the video The Counselor: Why Do You Doubt? | Craig Groeschel.
- Ancuta Rusu-Sieng just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Brad Russell shared How to Create and Manage a Blog (Part 1) | Tutorial: NEW BLOGGERS: You can network your blog into the site by clicking Manage My Loft/Blog. Here's a video explaining how to create and manage your blog in FV.
- Dave Jenkins, Jr. created a new gallery
- Brad Russell uploaded a photo
- Dave Jenkins just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Drew DyckMy interview on the Logos blog on how we try to domesticate God. http://blog.vyrso.com/2014/04/23/stop-trying-to-tame-god-rediscovering-dangerous-christianity/
- Blake Atwood published the audio Reimaginining God's Eternal Purpose: Part I | Frank Viola.
- Victor Nunez just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Lori Fogleman published the blogpost Baylor alum appointed to National Commission on Hunger.
- Dorothy Greco published the blogpost Relevant Magazine: Fear Doesn’t Have to Control Us.