Wednesday, July 16, 2008

fear and hope

Sam begins kindergarten in 3 1/2 weeks...bringing excitement as well as opening the can of fears. There are so many levels for parents to work through as a child becomes a student. One we're faced with here in Nashville is that the public school system for the metro county has performed poor enough (for several years) for the State of TN to "take control" of the district over the summer: assessing the current situation district wide and reorganizing the central office, moving principals around, etc. Its a move that should improve everything over time, yet its hard to believe more government from above that's disconnected is what's best for the kids...and our child.

We looked at schooling options in the Winter and Spring and applied for a lottery spot at several schools, none of which have come through. We visited our zoned neighborhood school several times and at the end of the day have felt ok about Sam starting there. In April I spoke with the principal for 30-45 minutes and was very encouraged by his philosophy and leadership. It was a strong encouragement and "positive" if Sam was going to attend that school. And there's not a lot to be encouraged about in the public school situation here.

Yesterday brought hard news and spun us into the emotional whirlwind again...disappointment, frustration, sadness, anger. With 4 weeks before school starts, the State and local board announced the shifting of about 20 principles (mostly moving around, a few new ones). And our school was on the list. We immediately tried to find out more about the new principal; a dead end because the info on the actual school's website hadn't been updated yet. We emailed our friend who has worked with that principal the past couple of years, wanting to know more yet dreading what may be hard to hear.

In my despair I try to keep running back to God for his promises. If I don't have the Spirit alive in my heart, I'm overwhelmed and lose hope. Colossians 3: let the peace of Christ rule in my heart; let the word of Christ dwell in me richly. 1 John 4: So we have come to know and rely on the love God has for us; There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.

When I am consumed with the cares of this world, I'm a slave to fear. It rules over me. I have no hope. Only if I'm led to the fountain of Christ can I shake off those guilty fears and doubting fears and rise with hope. And this hope does not disappoint us.

This is my prayer today: that I would know and rely on Christ; that I would be a slave to love and hope, not fear; that I would feel the wounds of disappointment and anger, yet be driven to the cross 10 times over; that hope would overflow from me, not just optimism or pessimism; that the God of hope would fill me with all joy and peace as I trust in him, so that I may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Disclaimer: The decision-making process in full is by no means summarized is far too deep and wide for this entry and best served over a cup of coffee (or several).


At 8:09 AM, Blogger Rod & Tori said...

I feel your pain and am encouraged by your hope. I'm reminded of the scripture in 2 Cor 1:8-11: "We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. 9 Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. 10 He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, 11 as you help us by your prayers. Then many will give thanks on our behalf for the gracious favor granted us in answer to the prayers of many." We don't have any promise that a walk of faith will be easy. But just as Jesus was perfected through sufferings, in like manner we will be perfected. If we just endure the sufferings, it's just a bad experience. But the promise stands that we are being conformed "to the image of his dear son". Our hope beyond suffering is glory, that will make the sufferings of this present life truly seem unworthy for comparison.

At 9:49 AM, Blogger adrianhitt said...

aaron, thanks for sharing your struggle and wisdom found there. it's encouraging to hear ... and assures hope.


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