Tuesday, January 19, 2016

What is Goodness in the classroom?

Have you ever had a slow start? This first post for the 16-9 blog in 2016 is starting off slow, but not without a constant love for Christian educators in the classroom. Have you had a slow start? Have you had good intentions to start the new year with resolutions or new goals?  If you jumped right out the gate full force, that’s incredible. If not, it’s never too late.  The 16-9 Movement blog was birthed this time last year to encourage, equip and empower educators to understand the first “16” words of the Constitution and to apply the “9” Fruit of the Spirit in the classroom.  I begin 2016 with thoughts on goodness in the classroom.
As I looked upon the word goodness in the Bible, I was surprised to find only 19 times that the word was mentioned. Naturally, the majority of the time the reference was to God’s goodness. Do you ever stop to think about His goodness? It’s overwhelming. Everything that is good comes from our Lord. The ability to be an educator is because of His goodness. The desire to become better educators comes from His goodness.  How can we display goodness to our students? This is not as simple as it appears on the surface. We are not naturally good as He is, but we are his ambassadors in our walk and to represent Him well in our classrooms daily, we must strive to be good to our students. As public school educators (teachers, paraprofessionals or administrators), we have the power to influence our students daily. Making a concerted effort to be good to them can change the whole focus of our classroom. 

Let’s look at the goodness of God in the 23rd Psalm. 

The Lord is my shepherd, 
I shall not want. 
He makes me to lie down in green pastures,

He leads me besides the still waters,
He restores my soul.

He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.

Yea, though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,

For You are with me;

Your rod and Your staff,
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.

You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
Surely your goodness and mercy will follow me

All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord


Purposeful goodness in the classroom involves a secure environment for our students where they have a sense that we would do anything in our power to help them learn. Our goodness to our students cannot be compared to His goodness for all His children, but stands as our guide. Can we create a classroom environment that is like still waters or green pastures that is refreshing to the souls of our children? It’s a high goal, but no learning will take place until they feel secure in our rooms.  Walking through dark valleys is often a way of life for our students, unfortunately. Can you imagine if your classroom is the safest place all day? Being purposefully good to students, especially when they don’t deserve it, is a gift from our good God. I encourage you to read the 23rd Psalm out loud to yourself. Afterward, read it silently and look at each stanza in the light of how to display goodness in the classroom. It’s pretty humbling.  

Our good God has placed us in the schools of America. We are the ones who can display His fruit and be good to our children.  Alistair Begg often says an old Anglican prayer that I would like to pass onto you today. 

Lord, what we know not, teach us; what we have not, give us; and what we are not, make us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.  

Prayerfully yours,

Note: To more fully understand the 16-9 Movement, please read the first blog entry by clicking here.

PS. Don’t forget to spread the word about the 1:16PM Prayer Movement and Around the Word in 180 Days:
      Go to www.one16pray.com  and www.aw180days.com for more information.
      Visit,  "like", and add comments the 1:16PM Facebook page and the Around the World in 180 days Facebook page.
      Sign up for text message prayer prompts from Remind 101 

May God bless you with success His way this 2015-2016 school year.

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.