LEAven Blog

Vision

Clear Vision

As I type this post I find myself between two eye surgeries for cataracts. My left eye had the lens replacement procedure earlier this week, and the right eye will have the same surgery in about eight days. Right now it is a challenge to do computer and close work with the difference in sight between the two eyes. Yet it is a blessing to be able to compare this difference and understand how cloudy my vision has become over the past several years.

There are so many ways one can apply this situation to life and faith. For instance, sin clouds our vision of who God is and what He has done, and we need the “surgery” of confession and absolution for clarity and purity in our lives. Or we might think that our whole lives are marred by cataracts so  we long for heaven where our sight will be repaired and we will clearly see our Savior face-to-face.

Instead, I’d encourage us to think about what this might mean in education with our students or the children we serve in our churches. What clouds our vision of them? What gets in the way of seeing who they really are and identifying the gifts our Heavenly Father has given them. See if you have lost clarity about any of your students in these ways (I have certainly dealt with this lack of vision at times):

  • Is our vision clouded to the truth that each student is created in the image of the Almighty God when behaviors become annoying?
  • Do we lose sight of the needs of students when they don’t fit the “perfect student” model, when they have learning challenges?
  • Are we challenged by leading students who have very different personalities and interests from ours?
  • Might we at times fail to separate ourselves from the way parents have addressed us and “seen” our students as an extension of their parents rather than as individuals?

Teaching and leading students in all venues is challenging, and it is easy to fall into the patterns listed above. Satan is constantly attacking us and distorting our view of both our students and our God. Yet we have the power of the Living God and His Holy Spirit to access, providing what we need to fully love and serve each student, breaking the “cataracts” of our view and providing the strength to carry out our Lord’s mission in our work with children.

May God bless you with clear vision for His continued service.

David Black teaches at Lutheran High School, Parker, Colo., and the director of Lights Academy, a project-based learning experience within the existing school. He is in his 33rd year as a teacher and has served Lutheran education at large as a writer, presenter, and consultant.

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