Devotions for Teachers: Giving Glory: ALL the Time

I glorified you on Earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.

-John 17:4

This week is going to be a busy one. Do we have any weeks where we don’t say that? We’re all deep into the countdown to Spring Break (15 days for us, BTW 🙌), and there’s a lot of ground to cover between now and then. We’ve got a major fundraiser about to happen at my school, along with field trips to schedule, chapters of content to finish, end-of-quarter assessments to give, etc. etc. etc.

When I think about my own teaching life, the idea of a new break is soooo exciting to me, because I feel like I’ll be able to get back in touch with who I really am. Can you relate to that thought? Why is it that the “real” us is put on hold during the school year, and we only feel like we can press play when we have an abundance of time?

Part of our problem is we feel like we have to compartmentalize everything. We think balance means giving 100% of ourselves to one thing at a time, and somehow giving all of those things a fair amount of time. So, if who I really am is a Christian, Wife, Mama, who loves to create, read, go to brunch, shop, cook, and do yoga. Then, I must give a certain amount of myself to God and only God each day, then go down the list and give a chunk of time to just my husband, spend quality time with each kid, get some friend time in, work in plenty of me-time for reading and writing and yoga, etc. etc. etc.

But life doesn’t work this way. And because we spend 40 hours a week (or more, if we’re being real…because #teacherlife never stops), we think we have to put everything else on hold until we have time to reconnect with who we really are. We almost feel like we don’t have time to take care of ourselves, because the school year is for caring for others, and we will get back to our own needs later.

This is a shame, because you are created in His image, and he doesn’t want you to feel like you aren’t you when you are doing your work. By teaching, you are doing HIS work. He is who created you to be who you are, to love who and what you love. You have been called to teach because you have those spiritual gifts.

When you shift your perspective and think about how you can glorify God through your actions, rather than serve yourself, you start seeing things differently. All day long, you are praising Jesus by teaching those kids. He designed you to do it, and you are doing good work, sweet friend. Find quiet time in your day to say thank you for the heart you have for children, and the ways they are blessing your life.

When you go home, honor God by taking care of your body with what you eat or how you exercise. Honor God by loving your family. Honor God by expanding your mind by creating or reading or writing or whatever you are gifted in. It’s amazing how much more you are willing to do when you realize you aren't just doing it out of selfish desire. You’re doing it because God made you this way. You were born to be a teacher, a daughter, a mother, a friend…ignoring even one part of yourself is failing to give proper respect to God’s creation.

As you go through this week, notice all of the ways that you can honor Him in your daily actions. Be the best you that you can possibly be. Do what you love. It’s what you were created for, after all.

If this resonated with you, feel free to grab the cards below to keep at your desk at school, or somewhere at home, to prompt you to remember that what you are doing is giving glory to God, and that should not be taken lightly!

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Stephanie Sutherland