Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Beginning of the End

If you surf through my Facebook's News Feed today, you'll see the following kinds of posts:

"It's the last first day of school!"
"Last first day of college!"
"Can you believe this is the last first day of school?"

I'm thinking a lot of people are excited about it being the last first day of school, what do you think? As for me, it's the first day of student teaching. Now, I'm not in the classroom today, I just have meetings at North Greenville but I'm excited all the same. I really want to be a teacher. I really want to have my own classroom and, to do that, I have to learn and student teach for a whole semester. So, while some people might be all like "boring meetings, ugh," I'm like "yay, meetings, woo-hoo!" I can't wait to see what I'm going to learn even in these policy and procedure meetings.

Therefore, I think my Facbook status (if I hadn't already done one today) would say something like:

"First day of student teaching! Can't wait to get started!"

For some people, it's the beginning of the end. For me - it's the beginning of the rest of my life.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Leave it all on the Mat

It's that time of year. Well, that time of every 4 years. Yes, it's Olympics time. This time, we've gone to London, England for the XXX Olympiad, as I am reminded every night when I turn on NBC. And there are a lot of success stories to enjoy.

Michael Phelps, standing at 19 medals as of tonight, Aug 1, the most decorated Olympian in history. Ryan Lochte making his mark in the pool. Missy Franklin. The women's gymnastics team becoming the second USA team to ever take gold in the team finals. Danell Leyva pulling out an amazing finish and taking the bronze in the men's all-around gymnastics.

But there's one story that makes me think. I'm a huge gymnastics fan; that's my favorite Olympics sport hands-down. And I love the men's gymnastics (except for the pommel horse). So imagine my heartbreak when team's finals day came. Mistake after mistake after mistake. Sam Mikulak took a huge step on his floor routine. John Orozco botched his pommel horse routine and sat down a bazillion times. Danell Leyva fell off the pommel horse. John Orozco again sat his landing on the vault. It seemed like Jake Dalton and Jon Horton were the only ones not failing their team. Pretty soon, all the footage was of the Brits, the Japanese, and the Chinese, with a little Ukraine thrown in there. The Americans didn't even get shown on P-Bars or Still Rings. It seems like once you're out of the running for a medal, even if you're the news station's country team, you're no longer given any screen time.

Then there was the high bar routines for the Americans. John, Danell, and Jon took to the air and flung themselves off the bar in some seriously styling high bar releases. They landed every routine and finished with pride. In the end, they left everything on the mat. They didn't hold anything back. Yes, the team didn't place, and didn't finish with the result they would have liked but they gave it their all.

There's a lot to be learned from them. We can't succeed all the time, especially as Christians. There will be moments when we're far from perfect, when we don't do the best we can. But we just have to keep going and we have to leave it all on the mat, in the ring, on the court, wherever you want to leave it. God doesn't ask us to be perfect.

He just asks us to give Him everything.

I think this picture sums it up pretty well: