Son of God

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Ten years ago the movie Passion of the Christ made waves in Hollywood.  It rocked the theaters with a rivoting portrayal of the last week of the life of Christ. I remember sitting in the theater and watching people walk out because they couldn’t bear to watch the torture Christ endured.

My husband and I were dating at the time. We went together to see the movie. As with everyone else, we sat in tears as we caught a glimpse of the sacrifice Christ made for us.

Now, ten years later, it is time to return to the theater. This time we are celebrating the birth, life, and ministry of Christ,  as well as the death and resurrection. A new movie, Son of God, will release in February.  A dear friend of mine shared the news with me not too long ago. We now are making plans for our youth groups to go see it.

As a teacher, I am excited that my students can get a taste of what life was life when Christ walked the earth. They can see him stand on a mountain and calm the sea. They can hear him command fishermen to cast their nets and command the dead to rise.  They can witness the awe on the faces of the crowds as Jesus heals. 

Each Sunday I try to bring to life the words in the Bible, but know I fall short. This movie can give my youth group a new way to meet Jesus.

To learn more, head to http://www.sonofgod.com

Blessings!

Day 3

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Middle schoolers! Yep. You read that right. I love the group of curious 5-8 graders I teach at church. I am thankful for their inquisitive nature, their curiosity, and their awe for the Bible. They remind me that seeking knowledge is greater than already knowing the answers. They amaze me with their faith. They are a gift of which I am thankful week after week.

Faith of Abraham

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11 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. (Hebrews 11:1)

I bet the woman from Proverbs 31 had great faith.  It probably gave her the confidence she needed to be the strong, God-fearing woman described to us.

I am in the middle of teaching the stories of Abraham to my middle schoolers.  For the most part, they know who Abraham was.  They can recount some of the more famous stories.  They know all about the test from God in which Abraham almost sacrificed Isaac.  They know all about his wife, Sarah, who did not believe she could have children.

My goal this week is to really drive home the point that God kept all of his promises to Abraham.  We admire Abraham’s faith in God, but God gave him every reason to trust.  God never let Abraham down.  Unfortunately, many of those promises took years and years to be fulfilled.  

Faith in God, the kind of faith Abraham had, is the understanding that God will uphold all of his promises to us.  He will carry us through the valleys, show us mercy, grace, and forgiveness.  We have to have Abraham’s faith and his patience.

Are you living life with the faith of Abraham?

Blessings!

 

I Love Getting a Do-Over!

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21 “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”

22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” Matthew 18:21-22

I got my haircut last week by a guy named Will.  It was the first time he had ever cut my hair, but he showed promise when he walked in sporting his spiky purple ‘do.  After the usual small talk, he asked me why I was a teacher.  My first response was, “Not for the money!”  He replied that he had never met a teacher who didn’t go into it for reasons more noble than money.  After thinking for a moment, I told him I liked teacher because you get do-overs.

He asked if I meant that my co-workers or boss were forgiving of mistakes.  I told him that I meant we forgive ourselves and strive to do better the next year.  I could tell he was confused, so I tried to explain as best I could.

Each year, we work as hard as can to do our best for the kids.  We love them, care for their basic needs, teach them manners, honor, respect, integrity, and all of the content the state and school district require us to teach.  And every year we fail to be perfect.  At the end of each year, I know there is a kid in my class with whom I should have done something different.  There is always one that I failed to reach, motivate, and prepare for life.

In most businesses, failing means the loss of a client or loss of money.  In education, failing is unacceptable.  We cannot afford to lose the children.

However, each year we get a do-over.  We get to try again. We get a new batch of kids ready for our knowledge, love, and best efforts.

As I sit in meetings this week, prepare my classroom next week, and await the arrival of my co-workers and students a couple weeks later, I will strive to remember to forgive myself.  This passage from Matthew doesn’t just apply to forgiving our brothers; we must forgive ourselves.  We are not perfect; only Christ is.  We are created to do our best.  When we mess up, we must forgive and move on.

This is a year of change and a year of hope in my school.  The best part is a fresh start, a do-over.

Blessings!

 

Percy Jackson and Other Heroes of Olympus

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Percy Jackson movie poster

Percy Jackson movie poster

One of my goals for the summer was to read a ton of books I have on my classroom shelves that I have never read.  I had stacks to get through, and I have spent a significant part of each day reading through these books written for 8-12 year olds.  I know!  It is a tough life when you have to read each day!:)

Who knew that I would find worthy, biblical lessons in a book about Greek mythology??!!

I knew the Percy Jackson series was extremely popular, but I hadn’t actually read any of them.  The first book is called The Lightning Thief.  I didn’t know that! Well, it just so happens that I read the first book of Rick Riordan’s Heroes of Olympus series, The Lost Hero,  instead of the the first book of the Percy Jackson series.  I realized my mistake, but I was already into the book, so I finished it.  Then I watched the movie of The Lightning Thief.  

Lessons learned:

  • I then had to go read The Lightning Thief.  I liked it so much better than the movie.  In fact, the ending stunned me.  The book’s ending is way better than the movie’s ending.  I have since finished the second, and I am half way through the third in the series.
  • There is a huge difference in the Greek gods and our God, but our God has the power of all of the Greek gods rolled into one being.
  • If my children were old enough, I would read these books to them!  We could have long talks about the power of God in our lives.
  • These books perfectly illustrate the power of prayer!
  • When I get hooked on a series of books, it gets expensive.

The other Percy Jackson books are slowly coming out as movies.  I imagine the other series, The Heroes of Olympus, by the same author will be turned into movies as well.  The fourth book in that series will be out this fall.  Despite my infatuation with the Percy Jackson books, the other series is better.

You know, many Christians shy away from popular culture.  We have to learn how to live in this world in a Christian way.  These books have a lot of value to them as great works of fiction.  They have the potential to turn kids onto reading like the Harry Potter books did several years ago.  As long as we remember to discuss with our kids the myths of the gods and the truths of our God, our children can enjoy books like these for years to come!

Blessings!

With the Help of Good Friends!

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Several changes occurred lately that reminded me how important my good friends are in my life.  Two of my teacher friends are leaving education, both for different reasons. However, I am happy that I have enough in common with them aside from teaching to carry on our friendship.  Another friend, who has been teaching next door for a couple of years, is moving to a new building.  I will miss not seeing her everyday.

All of these changes made me wonder who my “real” friends are.  Are they the people I see everyday?  Those that I keep in touch with over a span of years?

Tonight, however, I can describe a good friend!  Tonight we locked the keys in the car!

Years ago, before my husband went to college, he and his parents had these awesome neighbors.  They had two kids slightly younger than my husband’s youngest brother.  I think my husband felt like he had two extra little brothers.

Over the past few years, those boys grew.  They both were in our wedding 6 years ago.  This year, one of them graduated from high school.

We drove over to his house tonight to deliver a card and gift of congratulations.  Thinking we would only be away from the car for a few minutes, we left the dog in the car.  She hit the lock buttons!  Both sets of keys were locked in the car!

We spent about two and half hours hanging out with my husband’s former neighbors while waiting for help to arrive.  During that time, we were reminded of what good friends these neighbors are.  We realized that we really need to see them more often.

Who came to our rescue? Another amazing friend.  An amazing friend who happens to be a mechanic with tools to break into someone’s car!

Definition of a good friend:  Someone who we easily can converse with, accept our crazy children and love them, and can come to our rescue when we screw up! Our greatest friends are those we love for who they are!

The greatest friend we have is Jesus, but we are blessed with great friends in this life as well! I hope you feel blessed by your friends today!

Blessings!

Around the Colvin Cottage: The Mile-Long Week!

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I could probably break this week into five different posts!  We crammed so much into one week!

Our house officially went on the market.  The realtor photographed it and listed it.  I was very proud of how clean my house appeared for the pictures Tuesday.  Then life happened! It is NOT clean at the moment!

School was a mixed bag of emotions.  Monday was the big behavior reward for the kids.  We finished the book Wonder.  (Read my review here!).  The kids loved the book!  We ended the week with fifth grade graduation on Friday, the last day of school for students.

It is always bittersweet for me to say goodbye to a group of kids.  I always tear up when I hug a few of them for the last time.  My least favorite thing about teaching fifth grade is that I won’t see most of them again.  They leave and go to  new school next year.

This year, the goodbyes were worse than most years.  This time I had to say goodbye to several teachers that have held important roles in my life over the past few years.  I don’t necessarily need to say goodbye to them because I am sure I will see them again!  It just makes me sad that I won’t see them daily anymore!  I also know I am in for big changes.  One of those leaving is our principal; another one leaving is a teammate.

As for the book, it is so, so, so close to being finished!!! Look at how thick the manuscript is!!!!  After seeing the size, I think my husband finally understood why I spent so much time working on it.  Hopefully, it will make its way to the publisher this week!

Mega-thick book!

Mega-thick book!

With a week this crazy, something bad is bound to happen, right?  Thursday morning I woke up not feeling well.  I felt worse and worse as the day went on.  By the end of the work day, my fever was through the roof, and I was calling my husband to beg him to come home from work early and help me with the kids.

The next morning, Superhero Son had the same symptoms.  We have now both tested positive for Strep Throat.  Let me tell you there are some cranky people living in this house right now! Regardless, I managed to make it through the work week!

This is our countertop right now with medicine for two people with strep and a dog with Lyme Disease.  The dog is another post entirely!

The pharmacy that is my kitchen!

The pharmacy that is my kitchen!

Despite the round of illness, our week was not a wash.  We even had enough medicine in us to manage some fun on Saturday when the sun peeked out.

Superhero Son playing in the yard with bowls of water.  He said he was making a cake!

Superhero Son playing in the yard with bowls of water. He said he was making a cake!

I hope your week was full of happiness!

Blessings!