“No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks,” is the refrain most remember from Alice Cooper’s “School’s Out For Summer,” because through the eyes of a student that doesn’t love school there’s great reality. However, don’t we all hope they are still learning throughout the summer. Many students are blessed to have parents who travel and take them places while other students vegetate in front of the TV. What about teachers? What do they do when the school door closes for the school year? For me, I always needed those first few days to do nothing. It was if the hammer that was clanging on my head the whole year suddenly stopped. After that I typically had some type of professional development to attend, a conference or two and plans for next years. Fortunately, there is much more time for family and what a gift.
As you enjoy these summer days and typically have a slower pace, please let me encourage you to spend more time with the Lord. Develop holy habits that could be continued in the school year (perhaps on an abbreviated scale) that will cultivate your relationship with the Lord. It’s easy to cry out to Him in our desperations and exasperations, but too often we forget Him in less stressful times. I would like to offer just a few suggestions for spending time with Him:
- Invest in the habit of prayerwalking.
- Be in the Word everyday.
- Give thanks.
- Practice 1:16 PM
- Find an accountability partner.
Investing in prayerwalking has been a life saver for me. One of our pastors suggested it and I have found it to be my most engaging time in prayer. You definitely cannot fall asleep. If you’ve never tried it, the first time it’s a little awkward to pray and walk at the same time. Depending on where you are, the words can be audible or silent but the beauty that He has created around you is a testimony to His love. I have been prayerwalking everyday for 23 years and look forward to any time I can get to the water’s edge to prayerwalk at sunrise.
Being in the Word everyday is critical to our success as educators. I realize how hard that is early in the morning, but it doesn’t have to be long and involved, but He’s our coach. We need to drink in His plans and promises to be effective. A simple holy habit that I love is “flopping” in the Word. I randomly “flop” open my Bible each day and search for His message. 90% of the time I’m jazzed by what He reveals to me and I write a quick note back to Him with grateful thanks and an attempt to understand the verse in my present situation. The great app available for devotionals and tons of Bible translations is simply called Holy Bible. It’s been a life saver to have the word on my devices and available everywhere and anywhere I go.
We are asking you to practice 1:16PM this summer because for the 2013-2014 school year, we are asking every Christian in the public schools to stop and pray at 1:16PM. Based on Romans 1:16 - For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes; first to the Jew, then to the Gentile, we believe that this movement can be in every public school in America. The key is reverence and discretion. For more information, visit www.one16pray.com. Help us spread the word to your sphere of influence.
Finally, seek an accountability partner or small group who will hold you accountable to your desires to please Him. There is no better summer investment of your time than to grow more in love with our Lord. He will guide you, provide for you, look over you and give you peace. May this be your most refreshing summer ever.
Note: To more fully understand the 16-9 Movement, please read the first blog entry by clicking here.
Christian Educators Association International is the only professional association in the United States specifically for Christian educators in public schools. CEAI protects our members first in prayer, next with excellent professional liability insurance and other benefits while helping them live out their high calling as a Christian in the public school.