The nightmares have started – not the kind with monsters or zombies, but something much worse – the Back to School Nightmare! And I’m not talking about the kids, but the teachers!
I had mine a few weeks ago. I dreamed I was starting at a new school and I was late for my first day and then someone asked me to help at another school and I said yes and then I didn’t know who to call to tell that I wasn’t coming in on my first day and so I was panicking, and then I was on some sort of bus that was full of people and I didn’t know how to get off of it, and somehow I was at my old school but couldn’t figure out how to get inside – oh my gosh, it was horrible! I woke up in a cold sweat!
My school friends have been posting that the nightmares are beginning to happen. Different versions include showing up the first day naked, walking away as the principal is calling to them, not being able to find their classroom, and, the one closest to reality, standing in front of their class totally unprepared!
Back to school holds lots of anxiety for teachers. Classrooms have to be totally torn down at the end of the year for cleaning, so they know they have to come in and get desks arranged, bulletin boards put up, supplies organized and everything looking inviting. Elementary teachers go overboard decorating their classrooms and doors and hallways. This has to be done ahead of time because students and parents will be coming in for Open House. Then they have to be ready to hit the floor running with lesson plans and first day activities. Added to the stress is adjusting to new kids and staff, learning different curriculums, going to meetings, paperwork – it goes on and on!
As the media specialist, I work hard to make sure the teachers have what they need to start the first day, as well as getting the media center up and running. There never seems to be enough time and I’m already getting that panicky feeling that shows up in my dreams.
My devotional the other day was Philippians 4:4-8. This is a familiar passage about praying for everything in our lives. I looked it up in a modern version of the Bible call the Message:
“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”
Did you get that last part? “It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.”
When that panicky feeling comes up today, I am going to work at putting Christ there instead of fretting. I am going to do my best to not give into the worry that can sometimes cripple me but instead trust that God will get me through as He has done over and over! As soon as I feel myself with that sense of “It’ll never get done!”, I am going to try to stop and pray and let Christ come in and calm me. And then I am going to sit back and see what wonderful things happen!