Words, Encouragement and Hope

I’m coming back over here now! I have 50 subscribers and I know I haven’t posted since May.

As a Christian, I have to be so careful with my words. When I am bitter and have unforgiveness, it just comes through. It is like this, I was blogging full steam when all of a sudden someone who should be an authority in my life (not in my family but in my church) criticized me for blogging.

I am a person who has always worked to please authority and this has been a real stumbling block for me. However, as I look at the great commission, I see that we are to reach the ends of the earth. And when I look at the people who review this blog, it does reach the ends of the earth.

As my Cool Cat teacher blog has become increasingly popular (around 2,000 readers now on all of the feeds along with quite a bit of daily traffic,) it is easy to get distracted.

However, there is only one way I can be and be usable… humble. Not complaining or whining about others. Not making excuses. But just minding God! Doing as He says!

“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life – in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.” Phil 2:14-16

I will not argue about the merits of blogging. However, I know that everything that has breath should praise the Lord!

We need Christians blogging and praising God, the Lord of the Universe and Jesus Christ, the Son of God, our Master and Lord.

And as I was reminded this week as I read about the great Christians, many times, God has called Christians to greatly succeed in their occupation while holding out the flame of Christ. Look at David Livingstone, who made his name known primarily as a great explorer. He was a God called explorer to Africa.

Well, I’m a God called teacher. I often feel that I am the foolish one called to confound the wise for surely I have far less credentials than many.

However, God can do what I cannot.

There are many things that have happened over the last year or so with this month being one of the most difficult months I’ve ever had in my life. All of the things that I have pride in are being chipped away. I have had to step away from the Wow2 show that I do each Tuesday night very likely for good.

There have been many people who have hurt me deeply. In fact, more than ever. Both online and in real life I have had hurtful things said about me and my family behind my back. It has hurt greatly. Two of my children have hit puberty and have a full schedule of middle school activities and struggles. My life has come to a screeching halt as all I can do is wash clothes, pay bills, teach, and struggle to put a nice meal on the table each night.

I’m getting these bags under my eyes that I don’t like. And yet, it sounds like I’m complaining.

Killing Complaints

Friday was the best day in a long time. Do you know why? I had a friend struggling and did something that took a little effort for her that really met a need. It took time that I didn’t have and yet Friday was one of the best days I’ve had. Why?

Because I spent my time focused on another. Meanwhile, each morning, I get on my knees and cry out to the Lord for help. Several times I’ve been walking in front of the school and looked up into the blue sky as if up into heaven itself and said,

“Oh Lord, I know you hear me. Look down upon me, give me wisdom, have mercy upon me and my family and help us.”

And I know he hears. Although the struggles are still there, he hears.

I hold to this scripture,

“I waited patiently for the Lord; He turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet upon a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”

Psalm 39:1, 2

I wait. Sometimes I’m not so patient, but I wait.

I am truly nothing, but He is everything.

“We do not make requests of You (God) because we are righteous but because of Your great mercy.” Daniel 9:18b

It is difficult in education because there are so many who do not share my viewpoints on Jesus Christ. Even within religions called “Christians” there are many who just think it is about going to church and miss that it is about a relationship.

I often things that happen in even small ways, like two weeks a go on twitter, I had someone make a comment making fun of the state of Georgia and our governor for praying for rain. And yet, it has rained more in the last two weeks than it has since the springtime. In fact, we had a leaky roof at the school and were so happy about it!

I told this person, “I’m one of the ones praying!” He was influential in education and yet I had to say something! God is real! So many educators do not think so.

Each time I stand up, it is difficult. Daily I work with people of all faiths, for truly I feel it is my job to work with people of all types and to let my light so shine that people will want to know more about what makes me different and want to know Jesus Christ. If I cannot work with a Muslim, then I cannot call myself a Christian. My faith means that I love people and work as God says to work.

When I think about quitting blogging, I get e-mails from people telling me that my blog kept them going. I want to be inspirational.

And yet, I cannot ever be quiet about my faith, that is why I keep this blog. I want to come over here more and share my faith and what Jesus Christ has done for me. While I share my faith over there, not like this. This is where I share the inner workings of my faith and the verses that I want to share with you but also leave behind for my own children to read at a later time.

And yet lately, the experience has been so personal the wounds have been so deep that there are many things I can never share here.

I only know that I am on my knees each morning interceding on behalf of my family and going to face each day feeling as if I am being attacked by Satan himself. Sometimes I am failing, and yet I always have victory because Jesus Christ has forgiven my sins.

Because I like technology and am a self professed “geek,” I live my life misunderstood. And yet, even in my own geekiness I feel the calling of Jesus Christ to be an expert in technology. Continually He is teaching me how to do things that are beyond my grasp.

I want to help and inspire others to live better lives but most importantly to follow Jesus Christ. I want to write books (and blogs) that inspire people like Dale Carnegie has done for me. I want to help others. I also want to live in the country and move back onto the family farm. Oh, and I dream of being a great author. I dream it and breathe it in and out on a daily basis.

Most importantly, though, I pray that my children will live productive lives following Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior and can hold fast to the faith in a time when the love of many have grown cold.

We are coming upon a time when Jesus Christ will return with the voice of thunder and I and other Christians will meet Him. I honestly believe that when people see that the blog postings have stopped that they’ll know that I’ve gone and that Jesus is Lord. How will they know? They’ll know because I am active and evident in the online world. It is my calling.

Many do not understand this calling and that is OK. I submit to my husband in everything and he is supportive. But there are many who do not understand this calling or me at all.

And that is OK. For really, I am not the center of the universe nor should I ever act like I am. As I listen to many of the popular technology geeks, they are so self important and full of themselves. But who will remember them in 100 years? Who will remember me in 100 years for that matter?

But if I’ve used my time and energy to follow Jesus Christ on a daily basis, then something eternal has been done. For, “apart from Him I can do nothing.” Nothing. Nothing.

I am stripped of much of what I had and yet as I depend more on Christ than probably ever before in my life, I have so much more.

Like a seed of wheat that falls to the ground, it dies before it lives. I believe that great things are around the corner for me and my family. I know that often through the pits of despair, we come through to the savanna of rejoicing!

I know that depending upon Jesus Christ is always the recipe for success in any endeavor and that I will not turn from my faith in Him.

I know that when I am totally alone and lost, that when I grasp onto the one tiny grain of faith, that God will multiply that faith and take over.

We cannot give up. We must continue. But we also must understand that every human, no matter their state, is struggling in some way and that we must take our eyes off ourselves and wake up to the fact that the world is hurting. We must pray for our enemies, for many of them are lost or misguided. We must be kind to them even though we want revenge. We must know that God handles justice and not us!

My struggles are different from that of one who is lost. I have Someone to take my problems to. I have a God to get upon my knees and pray to. Who does the lost person have? A crystal? A rock? A momentary lightness of being? A chant word to repeat over and over? A dead prophet or statue?

I have a living breathing Savior who meets me as I kneel at the recliner every morning.

And that, my friend, is everything.

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2 Comments on “Words, Encouragement and Hope

  1. Good Morning Vicki. Thank you for this post! I was delighted to see it in my reader this morning. Thanks, too, for being so open and honest and real. I commented recently on another of your blogs about how much I appreciate your authenticity.

    You are a respected and influential leader in the field of ed tech, but the technology only exists to meet the needs of real people who live in a world of intense emotional, social, physical, mental and spiritual challenges. So, thank you again for being so real as a person, not just here, but wherever you post.

    Being real, of course, always leaves us exposed, and vulnerable to being hurt. So I will pray for your protection and for encouragement. I believe God has put you in a place of influence for many reasons. In this life, you will never know all the ways that He is using you to build His kingdom, to shine His light into darkness all over the world!

    You are touching the lives of many. You’ve touched mine, not only professionally, but personally and spiritually. You’ve been a blessing and encouragement to me. So please BE ENCOURAGED because God is using you to make a difference.

    My commitment to pray for you is real, and I will keep it whenever I read a blog post or a Twitter tweet from you.

    There is way more to the networking we do online than just professional development!


  2. Paul-

    Thank you for your encouragement and prayers. Just tonight I just looked at two posts on my cool cat teacher blog, one was unkind but the other said expletives I cannot repeat and was from an anonymous commenter who named himself “I will kill u” — something we all have to take seriously when we get it.

    I left a comment back on the post (it was about xbox and I think from a minor) as I prayed about how to answer.

    It is sad the things that happen. I appreciate your prayers, right now, I really need it Paul, thanks!

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