May: Finding Peace & Joy in the Perseverance

Posted on May 10, 2016 in Character, Christian Life, Fifth Grade, Fourth Grade.

May, the “goddess of spring” according to Roman mythology; also derived from the flower name which references the hawthorn which blossoms in May.

For teachers, the month of May has many different meanings. It’s the final month. It’s the month where all has get finished. It’s the month of making sure students learned everything we ever intended to teach them and more, the month of end-of-the-year field trips, the month of awards and class parties, the month of field day and the last parent conferences, and the month all administrative matters have to be completed before walking out into the bright, shiny summer days of rest and relaxation.

For teachers, we can so easily get caught up in the hustle and bustle of finishing the year that we forget this is it, the last month to teach valuable lessons, to take care of bumps, bruises, and scrapes, to wipe tears and calm emotions from hurt feelings, to share in the joys, sorrows, and successes, to see the beaming faces of the children they’ve loved for seven months shine with excitement as they receive their awards, to watch them walk away – some to never see again – into the rest of their lives.

As May approached, I encouraged my own students to finish as strong as they started, but had I spoken the same encouraging words to myself?

I had allowed myself to become overwhelmed with the matters that needed to be finished that I had forgotten all it took to get to this point and how valuable it is to finish as strong as I had started. I was encouraged recently while in staff meetings and in my own personal prayer time to look at the month of May differently than in past years. Instead of seeing it as so little time to get things accomplished and finished, it was a time to slow down, pay attention, and be fully engaged in the last few moments I had with these precious young children. I had to find the joy and peace in the perseverance. It’s not hard to find them; it just requires looking at things with a different perspective.

Butterfly Perspective

I take refuge in what James said, “Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. But endurance must do its complete work, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking nothing.”

It is my prayer that the students enter the next chapter in their lives having gained maturity from their faithfulness and find joy and peace in their perseverance.

~ Vanessa Robbins, Fourth/Fifth Grade Teacher

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