Yesterday was a very rough day at school. To start with, I didn’t feel well. On top of that, there was the emotion of the 10th anniversary of my best friend’s death. I was sick, tired, and emotional–not exactly prime form for teaching. Anyway, I blew it in my first class. My sixth grade students were also at less than their best, and at the end of a particularly rough class, I gave them a pretty rude lecture. I knew right away that I’d screwed up, and this was only emphasized by the sixth grade teacher noticing how silent they were when she got them from class and popping her head back in with a shocked look and “What happened?!?” She saw me later in the day and told me that the class was still out of sorts.
So, when I saw the class this morning, I knew I needed to make a priority of making things right with them. That’s what I did first. I had been harsh, unkind, and insensitive. I told the class that, and I told them what made the day so hard for me. I told them I wanted them to know what was going on, but I also knew that was no excuse for my harshness. I asked them for forgiveness. They were so sweet in speaking up quickly to tell me they forgave me. I was incredibly touched and encouraged by their sweet, sincere forgiveness. They were such a powerful example to me. They were a small representation of the sweet forgiveness Christ offers, and they gently reminded me that I need to just as quickly forgive others.