After completing my first Sunday School class solo two Sundays ago, I was sitting in the pew reflecting. Last year, I felt called to teach the high school class. When I became more feeble and had to retire from teaching the public sector, I cried out in prayer, "God are you finished with me?" As I sat in the pew, a door was opened. I volunteered for the task of teaching this class. My health can plateau or plummet at any time. I prayed for a plateau to run the course of last year's class meetings. It was granted. We finished the year with gusto and I even had a little steam left.
Summer passed and I had become a bit weaker in my leg and hand strength. Typing properly is a thing of the past. I now peck with my thumbs on an iPhone and then transfer it for clean up on the iMac. Always becoming smaller, I lose some type of physicality almost daily. My body is literally shrinking. I used to tower over students at six feet tall. In my chair, I'm a little over three feet tall. As the ligaments tighten and the muscles atrophy, I am becoming Buddha-like in my chair. We rub my belly for luck now as part of our silly idiosyncrasies. It's similar to our knocking on wood to reverse jinxes while watching sporting events. I'm blessed that we turn every deterioration into a hullabaloo! You just have to laugh.
As summer past and a new Sunday School year began, I found myself praying again for strength to complete this year with students and give even more of my physical being, to become smaller. The smaller I become ironically the stronger my will, mind, and determination become. I know I have been given a wonderful purpose whether I'm large or small. I'm still planting seeds and trying to shine bright. The smaller I am; the brighter the light becomes. My class room has been packed three Sundays in a row. For this, I am so grateful to the one who gives me breath. He has urged me to take on more. I will now teach on Wednesdays as well as Sundays. Will I be tired and become smaller still? Yes, my beautiful students, yes. He who guides my heart will be large within me so we can become "game changers" in a world of heartbreak, poverty, and evil. How blessed am I to become smaller? Utterly.
Dedicated to my keyboarding teacher, Ms. Rhodes. She was also a victim of ALS.