Week 19 & 20 in room 1501 at Joy Christian High School were a wrapping up of the entire first semester of the 2014-2015 school year. (Weeks 21 & 22 were Christmas break)
Week 19 & 20 were a couple of weeks of tidying up Bible Class Notebooks that would serve as the final grade of this first semester of Bible Class. There were a couple of Zeros I had to give as a final grade. The Notebooks worthy of being graded actually received a grade as low as 12 out of 100 and some received a 100! It is quite an experience grading final work. It shows how much the student cares and for some it simply shows that the student has brilliant strategy. Strategic students know the educational system. They know they want to pass the class, get the grade and move on. Some of the students are doing so incredibly well in the class, that to even take a zero on the notebook, doesn’t drop their grade even a letter grade. So…a few skipped the notebook and got a zero.
Now, to the rule follower adults reading this, who are shaking your head or even possibly feeling disgusted by this type of student behavior…This strategy actually made me smile. As a teacher, I gave these students a zero on their final grade and moved on. I can’t take it personal. Some of these students who strategically took a zero learned a principle I taught in the first two weeks of Bible Class. They learned about what I call our Personal Hermeneutic. If you want to know what these 6 levels of Hermeneutic are all about, you can read about it in full detail here… Week 6 of this blog series of “Having Done in Room 1501”, titled (Spirit Week). Simply click here.
These few students took ownership in their decision and knew that they could still get an A or even a B by taking a zero on the final project/test of this first semester. If you read the levels of Hermeneutic, these students did not live in fear of being punished (Avoider), they are not living to please(Pleaser) their teacher or even their parents. They are not living for some worldly reward (Seeker). They simply worked hard all semester and knew they had created enough of what I call “grace space” that they could relax/sluff-off and be fine with the final result.
I personally think these students can be the ones who end up being the leaders of our future, because they know how to move forward in life successfully without pleasing everybody around them. Some of the greatest world changers became what they are because they knew how to strategically break the rules, think outside of the box, generate change, and not be held back by fear of what other’s think.
Please know…I love the students who did the final project perfectly and accomplished an amazing Bible Notebook that is in perfect order. These students too, can have great success, and their work ethic of near perfection, shows it. The principle I’m trying to point out, is that both example students mentioned above are right. Just different. I would bet a lot of money (and I’m not a betting man) that the student who understands the strategy of being able to get away with a zero and still get the grade has more potential at becoming a world changer and leader. Why? Usually the person who is in pursuit of the perfect grade, and doing everything by the exact rules laid before them…is someone who is not willing to break outside the box and break a few rules to accomplish something. Again…this is not about right or wrong. It’s about style and strategy.
Martin Luther King Jr. had to break a few rules to make change.
Nelson Mandela had to break a few rules to make change.
Benjamin Franklin had to take some huge risks to bring us some incredible inventions.
Michael Jordan failed at the freshman high school basketball tryouts and was cut from the team.
Isaac Newton was told by his teacher that he would never amount to anything.
Beethoven was told to he would never be successful in the music world.
After all…what is school really about? Is about getting the best grade? Getting an A? Is it about doing everything the teacher asks or requires? No. It is about the student becoming prepared to be successful in life. Some of life’s greatest successes happen when we live motivated by our passion and not our fear.
Are the majority of your decisions you make in life motived out of fear or pursuit of your passion?
I believe your best decisions in life are not the ones that make a lot of sense to other people…even your friends or family. I think the best decisions in life are made through the understanding of how God made you, what He made you passionate about, and then pursuing those passions through the risk necessary to do what God asks of you. It’s different for everybody.
The longer I am in the educational and academic system the more I am recognizing that Academia would prefer you to be a robot just like the robot sitting next to you in your class…just like the robots sitting in the Academic Chairs of Authority….so tests are created to make sure you are answering the right robotic questions to make sure you are the robot you should be….measuring all the robots in the industrial robot production lines to other robots.
I’m afraid the average school system is too much like the original line of Henry Ford’s industrial age, assembly line production, of the first car he produced. These cars came off the assembly line with only one color to choose from, all exactly the same. It was a great victory for the American way to build a profitable business. My problem is that it seems that America is stuck in the past of thinking this is still the best process to create success today. This might be true in the production of material goods, but not in any people business.
I believe our current culture is stuck in the cul-de-sac of the Assembly line age. Those who are of age to have been influenced by the Industrial age of Assembly lines, are still in leadership of American businesses and are wrestling with the younger generation who have been raised under the influenced of the World Wide Web. There is a giant traffic jam currently stuck in this Cul De Sac. It is going to take time and lots of frustration before the traffic takes a U Turn and leaves the Cul de Sac.
Let’s take a moment and think in more detail about what I’m trying to say. What does Henry Ford and the world of academia have to do with each other?
I do not think Henry Ford’s greatest invention was the Model T car. In fact Henry Ford didn’t invent the car. He invented the Model T version of a car. But, I do not think Henry Ford’s greatest influence upon our world came from the Model T…it came from the invention of the Assembly line. Henry Ford discovered the ability to produce an affordable car through the assembly line that increased the efficiency of manufacture and decreased its cost. Ford did not conceive the concept, he perfected it. Prior to the introduction of the assembly line, cars were individually crafted by teams of skilled workmen – a slow and expensive procedure. The assembly line reversed the process of automobile manufacture. Instead of workers going to the car, the car came to the worker who performed the same task of assembly over and over again. With the introduction and perfection of the process, Ford was able to reduce the assembly time of a Model T from twelve and a half hours to less than six hours.
Henry Ford is an inspiration to the USA. He is a hero to capitalism. Henry Ford’s style influenced millions of Americans to think differently about production and success. I think Henry Ford and the other’s who were inspired to copy his style of business might have influenced our American Education System.
Have we created an education assembly line, that maneuvers individual souls down conveyor belts, to Education Assemblers who aim to manufacture products of same-ness?
It is an honest and fair question. I think the answer is, yes. And, I think this style has crept into our Churches, Hospitals, HOA’s, Sports world, and many other people circles.
This is why I personally am thrilled to see students jump off the “assembly line”…okay with getting a zero… to live strategically towards their passions, not afraid of the wrath of the Assembly line workers.
I am convinced… greater purpose and fulfillment is achieved through living in your passions and not your fears. I am also convinced that those who live in their fears will someday arrive at death’s door very safe. It is terrifying to step out, challenge, and/or ignore the assembly line workers, and live for your passions…but those who push through the terror of stepping out…will be the ones who change something in this world.
Some with a strong Bible understanding, might say that fear can be good, and also might quote the incredibly wise Bible verse of Proverbs 9:10,
“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom.”
I agree that there is a great purpose in Fear. Please understand when I celebrate the person who strategically ignores a few rules, that I am not talking about anything that has to do with sin. When I say I love the person who follows their passion…I am not referring, for even a second, that I celebrate unholy living of any kind. That is not success. Some fear is necessary. The fear of putting your hand on a burning stove. The fear of being too close to the unguarded edge of the Grand Canyon. The fear of head on collisions in automobiles. The fear of breaking the heart and will of God.
That’s good fear.
That Bible verse, above…it says the BEGINNING OF WISDOM. I don’t just want wisdom’s beginning. I want it’s middle and end. I want its fullness. We must have some motivation based from fear. I’m simply saying we must be very wise in WHO we fear. I have a serious problem with the RULER Hermeneutic (Clink link and go to Ruler Definition section of that blog). This type of person believes that if you break their rules, you dishonor God. This type of person would really have struggled with Jesus in how He confronted the Pharisee’s of His time. My goodness…Jesus was a rule breaker. He followed His Passion…To honor ONLY the Will of His Father…at the ignoring of many authority’s rules.
And He was successful. It didn’t make a lot of sense to the people around Him. Even those very close to Him…who spent years with Him. Jesus was so misunderstood because He followed His God given passion. I wouldn’t say that Jesus ignored His fears…He instead had great courage and trust in His Holy Father that overruled his fear.
It’s not wrong to be afraid. It’s wrong to listen to your fear at the demise of the Passion that God you to accomplish something for Him.
2015 is Here…ANOTHER YEAR IS ABOUT TO BLAZE BY….What fears are holding you back from living in the Purpose(s) that God is calling you to live for?
What do you fear? Is it possible that the Devil has instilled some fear in you to try to keep you from doing what God would have you do and be?
I challenge you to really break down your fears by thinking about what it is you truly fear. When you write down a few things you fear…then…ask yourself Why you fear it. When you think of the answer…write that down too. Then ask yourself Why again. Do this process about 5 or 6 times and I think you will get to the root of what you truly fear.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of all Wisdom. I challenge you to live in complete wisdom…not just in wisdom’s beginning. Complete wisdom will be found by filtering through all the voices in your life and in your head and only listening to the Voice of God. Listen to only God’s voice. WARNING NOTE: God’s voice will never tell you to do something that isn’t already founded in the Bible. Or, as I like to say it…
GOD’S WILL will never go against GOD’S WORD.
Living for GOD’S Will through God’s Word…will cause you to live as an individual designed by God as an individual, who will stand before God individually to give an account of everything you did. Don’t be a robot. God created you as an individual. If you live in the USA, then you also live in a country that is founded on individuality, filled with truths to be self evident. You are created to be free. Live in the Freedom of how God created you to live and follow His guidelines (Bible) of true freedom. It’s the difference of living for your fears or for your passions.
Happy New Year.
13 weeks ago, I sat in a classroom at Grand Canyon University with all the teachers and administration from Joy Christian School to be trained and prepared for the coming school year. 13 weeks! Crazy how fast that time has gone by.
In the training from 13 weeks ago, I remember Joy’s Executive director challenging us to keep our eyes on Jesus and to be really bad at looking back. Great advice.
We are now approaching the halfway mark of the school year. We only have 6 full weeks of school before Christmas Break.
I’m new at Joy Christian this year. Rumor has it that Joy School has had some drama in the past…what org hasn’t and doesn’t? LOL! I haven’t seen any of that drama this year. Forward movement is a wonderful thing. We all have problems and obstacles that will try to throw us off course.
This week-13 in Room 1501, I have had to lead students who are dealing with education fatigue. I have heard a lot of talk about being worn out, and ready for a break. These are obstacles and distractions, that if not confronted, can grow into full blown drama. I don’t know who said it, but the following phrase is true. “Tough times never last, tough people do!”
NO ONE LIKES DRAMA….don’t let drama get you all nasty! Toughen up and last!
So…Christmas is almost here. That means 2015 is right around the corner.
What is distracting you?
What are some obstacles/problems/people that you want to control and change?
I’ll bet these things are causing you great frustration. The problem is…the only way you can change them…is if they are about you.
Everything else…Is God’s job to change.
Get your eyes back on your job and your purpose. Leave everything else to God. Get rest. Drink more water. Eat a little better. Read God’s word. Choose to find the good and praise it.
When you want to critique…instead…find something positive to say. Find it!
What is your alternative? Crankiness? Grouchiness? Fruitlessness? Complaining to others? Those things suck. When you get caught up in them, it causes you to suck too!
You don’t want any of that. Others don’t want you like that either.
This past week in Room 1501 I am just trying to do my job to inspire the students to love the Lord, learn the Bible and be drawn closer to their creator. I want to lead by example of how great Joy School is and how bright its future is. When I keep my eyes on that…Life is good.
Everything else is someone else’s job…mostly God’s.
I just want to lead by example. You do to. If you are a teacher. The semester is almost over. Finish Strong. If you aren’t a teacher…Christmas is coming…Year End too. Finish Strong! By the way…we’re all teachers…whether vocational or not!
In the process…I’m leading Return Hope International and striving to make a strong spiritual and economical impact in Uganda Africa. I could say everything above fits exactly for it too. So this is proof to me that whether I’m in Room 1501 for Joy School or in my office at home administratively leading Return Hope International…its all the same.
We are facing year end….which means new beginnings are coming!
I leave you with 1 Corinthians 10:13,
“13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”
You got this! Finish strong.
I’ve got nothing outstanding to tell you about this past week. It was a good week. It was long week. The previous two weeks were only Tuesday through Friday due to Labor Day weekend and last Monday’s flooding. In my Utopia…I’d like to have every Monday off! 🙂 I’ll bet you would too.
So…this week’s blog is just going to be an oddball blog of some of the first things that POP into my mind about this past week. I’ll try for a ‘POP’ 10 list.
1. I would rather take a 50 point test than grade 100+ of them! (I might put the actual test at the bottom of this page if you’d like to attempt taking what your students in Room 1501 did). 🙂
2. I am really loving how the Coffee Shop at JCS has York Peppermint Patties for sale at 2 for a quarter!
3. I wish the JCS Coffee Shop carried Snickers…but due to peanut allergy issues in our world, it is best they do not carry Snickers…”packed with peanuts.”
4. In order to get good grades in Room 1501…all you have to do it take good notes, keep an organized Notebook of all the handouts I give you, and use those notebooks during the test. If you fail my tests…you stink at keeping an organized notebook! I believe in you enough to keep an organized notebook!
5. You can teach people the Bible, but you can’t make them learn it!
6. The longer I’m around the Room 1501 students, the more I’m proud of them, love them, and deeply desire for them to be successful now and for the rest of their lives.
7. You cannot force people into spiritual discipleship. You must earn people’s trust, lead by example, and wait for them to “get it” or ask for it.
8. As a teacher… If you bring a large bag of Life Savers, the students will be full of gratitude…until you run out. When you run out of Life Savers, the thank you’s end and they threaten mutiny and demand you bring more! 🙂
9. Things will not always go the way you want them to. You can try to control these situations…but I’m pretty sure all control belongs to God.
10. I believe I am a warrior in the service of Joy and I can never stop taking a stand, speaking up, and doing my very best work.
Do you want to take the test the students took in Room 1501 this past Friday? Here you go…Let me know how you do!!
After last weeks blog I’ve been curious how this week’s blog would go in regards to what is being done in Room
I simply want to say this. The administrative team at Joy Christian School are overwhelmingly supportive. I am grateful for the team environment at Joy. I don’t think I need to remind anybody that any conflict has the potential to cause great disaster…even a smaller conflict like the one I posted about last week. The Bible says in James 3:5 referencing our tongue/mouth, “But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire.” The best way to snuff out a spark is to douse it with water. I could have chosen to bring gasoline to the spark, but I’m grateful I chose water. Are you bringing gasoline or water to your “fires”? In John 4:14 of the Holy Bible, Jesus says, “Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Does what you bring to a conflict/argument add life or bring death?
Sometimes we think it feels good to win arguments. I’ve found, that most of the time, when I think I have won the argument…I actually lost the person in my win. Can you relate? I would warn us all to be careful in enjoying a battle we are winning, because our focus on just the battle may blind us to the fact that we are actually losing the war. Some “wins” are not worth winning. I’m grateful for how my meeting went.
Enough about last week. This week flew by. First of all, Labor Day weekend used up Monday, leaving Joy School with a 4 day school week. Oh, I’m not complaining, 🙂 I’m just stating a fact. The 3 day weekend was great.
The remaining 4 days were packed with what is called extra-curricular activity that caused a lot of interruptions in Rm 1501. Many people needed to come into Rm 1501 to announce future events and bring clarity to school and church functions. We had a picture day where every student had to leave class to go and get their school photo taken. We had chapel on Wednesday. We had our first, All-School Pep Rally….And, our football team and Spirit line had to leave early on Friday to head to Tucson, AZ to play Pusch Ridge Christian Acadamy in what was called the 7th most recommended football game to watch in the state of AZ this week!
Pusch Ridge was ranked 4th in the state in our division. Joy Christian was ranked 7th. Joy beat Pusch Ridge decisively 28-6. (The competitor in me has to add that with 13 seconds left, we took a knee on the one yard line where we would have scored another touch down making the final score 34-6. (The competitor in me grumbled about this classy and great sportsmanship decision by our coaching staff.) 🙂 It was a great decision! I love the direction that JCS is going!
So, as you can tell, this past week was very challenging to get any academia completed in my 40 minute classes. I spoke briefly about this with one of Joy’s School Administrators. I suppose it might have sounded close to complaining. The administrator with a big smile looked at me and said, “Wow Trent, you are starting to sound like a teacher!” I laughed. They laughed too. That comment stuck with me and I have thought about it further.
As a teacher, I have an agenda and a lesson plan that I want to accomplish every day…every week. This agenda is full of academia…A very important thing. But, is it the most important thing? If I’m not careful I could easily slip into thinking that my academia lesson plan/agenda is the most important thing. I must pause and remember to…
Never let school get in the way of our student’s education!
Academia is a part of education. It is not all of education.
Education > Classroom Academia
Sports, Art, Extra Curricular activities, field trips, student council, free time, sick days, etc…are all a part of the world classroom’s education process. The world is our classroom…nothing can truly be controlled and the best schools in the world accept this fact. The best education is a diversified education. Even the Bible says in 1 Corinthians 8:1, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.”
The students in Room 1501 will get to spend the rest of their lives learning knowledge. I am teaching the students of Room 1501 Bible Knowledge…and at 43 I am still learning it too.
I must make sure, in my attempts to transfer knowledge, to never forget…
LOVE is more important than KNOWLEDGE.
The love for sports, art, free time with friends, extra curricular activities, field trips, student council, and even being gone because of sickness is vital to a great education. I think the most famous educators in the world would agree that the best knowledge is not learned in the academic classroom. I think you would acknowledge this fact too. Do you agree?
It was a crazy-busy week, but it was a great week.