Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Students Are Gifts

At my school, students are God's gifts to me. They are already wrapped, some beautifully and others less attractively. Some have been mishandled in the mail; others come "Special Delivery." Some are loosely wrapped, and others are tightly enclosed.

But the wrapping is not the gift, and this is important. It is so easy to make a mistake in this regard, to judge the contents of the gift by the wrapping paper.

Sometimes the gift (the student) is opened very easily; sometimes the help of others is needed. And maybe it's because they are afraid to be opened. Maybe they have been opened before, and because the last person didn't value them, they don't want to be opened again. It could be that when they were opened before, they were discarded and thrown away. They may now feel more like "things" instead of human beings.

At my school, just like my students, I too am a gift to be shared. God filled me with a goodness that is only mine. And yet sometimes even I'm afraid to look inside my own wrappings. Maybe I'm afraid I would be disappointed. Maybe I don't trust my own contents. Or maybe I've never really accepted the gift that I am.

Every meeting with my students is an exchange of gifts and an
opportunity to share. I'm a gift; they are gifts. We are gifts to each other.

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