Flexico Mexico. I have perhaps never encountered so many last minute decisions and finalizations as here in Mexico at Lincoln School. I wanted God to teach me flexibility and to trust in Him even in situations out of my control and He certainly has been. The first week and a half, I think I did a pretty good job of accepting things as they came and not letting myself become worried by unknowns or fuzzy details. At one point, the mentor teacher and I got off at the wrong bus stop, past where we were supposed to be. We had to walk back in the dark and rain, across multiple lanes of highway entrance and exit ramps. The mentor teacher said that if it had to happen, she was glad it was with me, since I was “one of the most laid-back people [she knew]”. What? Yes! Okay, maybe one week is not long enough to know me that well, but it still made me happy that is was evident that I was relaxed and not stressed that first week.
This week has been a bit different. All of the teachers and staff are back at Lincoln working really hard to prepare classrooms and get ready for our first day of school. It has also involved having a lot of meetings. Every morning has started with 45 minutes of praise and worship followed by a brief devotional. There is not a building on our campus big enough for all of the staff, so we meet under the dome that covers the basketball court. Every morning we get to watch flocks of birds dancing in the sky while we worship together in English and Spanish. That time has been so refreshing and beautiful.
The rest of each day has been crazy. When I first went into my classroom, all the furniture and a dozen or more storage boxes were piled in the middle of the floor (they paint the walls each summer) so I had to move all of the furniture and sort through each box to see what the previous teacher had left me. It took me a couple days just to do that, before I could even get to thinking through classroom management and procedures so that I could make posters, hall passes, etc. Oh yeah, and then I have to lesson plan for this coming week (my curriculum was tucked in those boxes so I was not able to see it until I sorted through them).
I only got my class list half way through this week, was only able to talk to my co teacher on Thursday, and only got my weekly schedule on Friday (that is, today, with classes starting on Monday). So this week I have had to do a lot of work, not knowing all the steps along the way, and that has been frustrating. I have had to battle uprising complaints and despair. But “I asked the Lord that I might grow” and this is how the Lord teaches us. In this incredible hymn, John Newton continues with,
‘Twas He who taught me thus to pray;
And He, I trust, has answered prayer
But it has been in such a way
As almost drove me to despair.
And so I press on, knowing my prayer is not easily answered, but hopefully anticipating the revealing of his grace and glory.