Review – Week of June 20, 2016
Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
The end of a school year often finds teachers reviewing their year. They look back on the things that went well and find satisfaction. They look back on the rough parts and decide what can change and improve for the upcoming year. As you do this, you may be tempted to fall into one of the following ditches:
1) You may look at all that went well during the year and think, “I am an awesome teacher. I have accomplished so much, and I am a professional that others should learn from. I will give myself a pat on the back.”
2) You may look at all that did not go well and fall into despair. You may say, “Why am I a teacher? There are so many things that I failed to handle with grace and professionalism. I can’t even begin to imagine doing this all over again next year.”
The problem with both of these scenarios is that we are trying to find our identity within ourselves. We are measuring our worth by our own outward accomplishments or failures, and this creates fear. We fixate on our mistakes because we fear that others will see us as failures. Even in our successes, we put more pressure on ourselves to repeat them and fear the ridicule if we don’t.
We need to look at ourselves as God looks at us. Isaiah says to FEAR NOT, because God has redeemed us. Christ went to the cross and erased all the pride and all the self-pity with which we fill our minds. When we were baptized, we became God’s very own child; he claimed us. We find our identity in Christ, and when we do, we see a God who loved us enough to die in our place. We see a God who calls each of us personally by our name. How special we are to him!
Go, my children, with my blessing,
Waking, sleeping, I am with you;
You are my own.
In my love’s baptismal river
I have made you mine forever.
Go, my children, with my blessing–
You are my own.
(Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal-332)