Back to school—what can I say? I love school. I have not always loved school—this will be evident to some of my family members who had to drag me to the bus stop when I refused to get on the bus. I can also remember being in the parking lot of the school refusing to get out of the car. I can remember my teacher coming out to talk with me, and I can remember my principal coming to my house in his car to pick me up for school. I doubt that would ever happen again today!
Returning to school evokes many different emotions for many different people. Parents are happy to have a routine in place again—whether that is school outside of the home or the structure of home school. Teachers are anxious to be back in the classroom with a group of students they do not yet know. Students are…well, they are a mixed bag. Some cannot wait to return while others are dreading the experience. My three school-aged children have expressed a variety of sentiments about this year’s return to school—anger, sadness, and giddiness. How can one family have such diversity? It certainly made for an interesting bedtime on the night before school began.
Solomon reminds us in the book of Ecclesiastes that there is a season for all things. There is a season to sit by the pool and relax with family—and it was a good one this year where I am from. However, that season is drawing to a close. The water in the pool is becoming more and more cold, and the hornets are becoming more and more friendly. The new season that is beginning is one where we will lay down new skills, learn new information, stretch our borders and boundaries, and experience the blessings and provision of God in new ways. For me, that is incredibly exciting. I will also enjoy Mondays at home with my wife and just one child—how different of an experience that will be☺.
Whatever emotions you are feeling about the return to school this year, it is important to realize that they are not wrong. There is no one set way to approach the coming of this new school year, and there is no temper tantrum that will delay the start of this new season—my son will discover this. Nevertheless, no matter what you are feeling, it is important to step forward in faith and complete reliance on God. If you are apprehensive, I pray for God’s peace on your soul. If you are excited, I pray that you remember that to be a blessing to those who may be struggling during the first days. I pray that we all rely on God for strength, courage, and wisdom. I also pray that we in North America remember the blessing that it is to even have access to education and a means to make a positive change in our world.
With that said, I am off to make a batch of homemade waffles—my children’s request for breakfast on their first day of school. I am sure there will be all kinds of emotions displayed this morning, and this time (hopefully) I will be ready.
Dear God, be with students, families, schools, and teachers this year—Amen.
Nathan is a husband to Mandy, and Daddy to Ben (7) Sophia (6), Spencer (4) and Grayson (1). Nathan grew up in Nova Scotia but currently resides in Southern Ontario where he is the youth pastor at a local church. He has a B.Sc with first class hours in Microbiology and Immunology from Dalhousie University and a M.Div from Acadia University where he obtained the silver medal in theology. He enjoys reading, writing, teaching and watching legal/crime dramas with his wife on Netflix.