Excitement in the Air

As an elementary school student, it was my second most favorite day of the school year: the first day of school.  I liked meeting my new teacher and seeing which of my friends would be in my class from the previous year, receiving new text books, and finding out where my desk would be located in the classroom.  There was so much excitement in the air.

               Part of that excitement was the result of the previous day, when I went to the store with my mom to buy new pencils, new paper, new notebooks, new crayons, a new lunch box, a new ruler – -and new clothes.  I liked getting a new shirt and new shoes, but I dreaded the part about trying on blue jeans.  I would come out of the dressing room and embarrassingly stand as my mom pulled and tugged at those denim pants to make sure there was enough room in the waist and legs and – – well, you get the picture.

               Of course, in those days faded jeans with holes in them were not the fad.  No, these were dark blue denim with the cuffs rolled up twice (at least mine were – I was short back then).  Pants pulled up, belt in place, shirt tucked in, no hat, unscuffed sneakers…So off I went to my new classroom in my new clothes with my new school supplies; there was so much excitement in the air.

               Like many other students, my most favorite day of school was the last day!  I liked turning in my textbooks, cleaning out my messy desk, putting all my broken pencils and broken crayons in my torn book satchel, along with my dented up lunch box and leaky thermos, wearing my light blue denim jeans with patches in the knee to cover the holes that had appeared.  It was summertime! There was so much excitement in the air.

               I am not so sure I realized it back then, but now I know that the most important days were those that fell between my second most favorite day and my favorite day.  Those days were filled with academic, social, and physical development, and those were the days when schools recognized and were allowed to address the significance of moral character and national pride.  I owe a great deal to my school teachers from across those years.

               I encourage you to take a moment right now and pray for our students, teachers, and administrators as this new school year begins; and further, that you will continue the habit of such prayer throughout the school year ahead.   Our children deserve the best.

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