A Teacher’s Heart of Gold
The first day of school is special each year as I look up and down each row.
Looking at new supplies, new shoes, new clothes, what is most important doesn’t show.
Within minutes, they show you who is the brightest star…
It’s also very evident who carries the deepest scars.
The one who didn’t eat breakfast sits quietly at their desk
Finding it hard to wake up and concentrate on the simplest of tests.
There’s the one who was held back for failing, unsure if it’s worth it again
All the directions, rules, information, enough to make his head spin.
Look , there, the pretty one whose eyes so sad look up,
Glance quickly down so I’ll not see heartbreak overflowing from her cup.
How can he pay attention when they were screaming all night long?
How can he learn anything when his heart has lost its song?
Across the aisle, the bully, who loves to sneer and intimidate,
Beside him, is the dreamer , the one who loves to create.
Shyness and insecurity causes the precious one to dream.
If only I were more like her, the one with all the friends, it seems.
Oh God, as I look up and down the rows, into the eyes and hearts of each child,
And even thought it’s against the law for me to teach Your love inside…
May my reactions to their cruel words and lack of discipline, be profoundly kind.
May they your mercy, love , and joy, in me every day find.
May I respond to irritations as I would to a child of my own,
For each of these children are loved just as much as mine at home.
I pray I’ll be a shining light drawing them to see this heart of mine.
May Your love and kindness, every moment of every day shine.
Someday may they remember that once upon a time
That God reached down and loved them and allowed them to shine.
May it be remembered that it was through kindness from above
It was through that teacher’s heart of gold who taught them how to love.
ASK FOR PERMISSION © Copyright 2016 Deborah Johnson words and photos
photo © with National Geographic DJHayes