my reconstruction

Interesting things, bricks.  Used for thousands of years to add strength to a structure and to give it order and foreverness.  Symbols of something civilized and planned.

I have had a few days where the bricks in my own bldg (read:world) seem to be crumbling.  A friend on facebook told me today that it is probably just the mortar.  I would like to think that is true.  Relaying those bricks and remortaring... sounds hard, but it can be done.

When the really important things in my life are in order, like support and love from a good husband, happy and healthy children, a roof over my head, etcetera, etcetera, I feel incredibly ungrateful in my ingratitude.  If that makes sense.

It's been a hard few days.  The weight sometimes comes down and cracks up these building blocks.  This is not a new topic here on my blog.  I feel a bit overburdened with my school work, my calling. And in the next 2 months I have to make placements for my students for next year.

I don't want to overplay it, but these little kiddos are entrusted to me.  I make decisions about where they go to class next year.  A regular kindergarten?  A self-contained unit?  I spend months earning the trust of parents, and often call on that trust when a hard thing needs to be said.  It can be terrific when there has been a load of progress made and the news is good.  And it can be devastating when the news is to the contrary.  I don't like the looks of disappointment.  Last Thursday at parent/teacher conferences I cried three times.  One time it was because I was relating something sweet I had observed in a little boy in my class.  Genuine love and service to a classmate.  The other two times I cried it was because parents approached me and said, "My child needs a special class next year doesn't he/she?" I had been prayerful about talking to these parents, and instead they talked to me.  It was a tender moment for me, as I recognized my concerns had been answered.

I have the desire to do well and to do right.  In all of these areas.  I need inspiration.  And sometimes I think the Lord may be getting really sick of my petitions.

But He keeps coming back with help and more mortar.  So, though my bricks crumble, I have hope of being built back up.  But the process can be sloppy and painful.


Kimberly Vanderhorst | January 19, 2011 at 6:38 PM

This brought tears to my eyes. Tender mercies mean so much more during the rough times...Here's to being rebuilt. Stronger. Deeper. And infinitely more beauteous.

Unknown | January 19, 2011 at 6:39 PM

You have remarkable intuition to go with that beautiful faith, and that will see you through. My thinking here is that sometimes it's the mortar, and occasionally it's the bricks. What I mean is sometimes I find myself trying to add fresh mortar when what the Lord is doing is upgrading the building. CS Lewis talks about this. So does Christ; new wine in old bottles, etc. Anyway, that's when it really is the most painful, because He's telling me it's time to take my discipleship, my stewardship, to a new level. But those are also such sweet experiences. Maybe that's where you are, Kaz. The help will come when it's needed.

Kazzy | January 19, 2011 at 6:44 PM

Thanks, friends. There is also a CS Lewis quote somewhere about being a field needing re-plowing. This is me right now. Kinda beat up. Kinda excited about renewal. Kinda exhausted.

Welcome to the Garden of Egan | January 19, 2011 at 6:44 PM

You do have a full plate.
I think the mortar is strong though. The bricks are beautiful and YOU are wonderful.

I would have loved to have had my kids in your class. It is so obvious that you LOVE what you do.

Connie | January 19, 2011 at 8:37 PM

Love and faith are the mortar that can hold the bricks together. You've got that love for your students, your YW, your family, your life. You have the faith that you'll get the help needed. Hang in there. You have a good family and a box of Dots to see you through!

Jenny P. | January 19, 2011 at 9:16 PM

Love the thoughts you've shared, and love the comments I've read. It's remarkable what the Lord is able to make of us. Here lately, I've been struggling to truly let him, i think... baby steps, I guess.

Marianne | January 19, 2011 at 9:29 PM

Oh you sweet, sweet girl. The fact that you're willing to keep rebuilding, that you know that you can...that's what makes the difference. We don't give up, we just take a deep breath and...what do they say? Oh yeah, ENDURE to the end. You're enduring. And you're doing it beautifully. I so admire you. More every day.

Barbaloot | January 19, 2011 at 11:14 PM

Re-building can only ensure that you're stronger and more stable for the future. It's definitely not fun/easy, but the way you write about it I can't imagine you not succeeding at it.

Becca | January 20, 2011 at 7:59 AM

Yeah. I just want to say, yeah. I hear you. Those bricks, that mortar. And I wish I could just Be DeNae for a minute, because she said it so well.

And the help does come, as you well know. And so does the down-time. But during the Press of it all, the mercy whispers. And you do a good job of hearing those whispers and repeating them out here, to us.

Bossy Betty | January 20, 2011 at 9:05 AM

A beautiful metaphor here and one I will always remember!

Brianne | January 20, 2011 at 9:51 AM

Sometimes God's just trying to remodel...Maybe put a door where that wall was.

TisforTonya | January 20, 2011 at 10:15 AM

it sounds like your are an answer to prayers for these children and their parents... you've created a building of safety and refuge for them, but maybe need to make place for yourself in there!

Charlotte | January 20, 2011 at 12:12 PM

Those tender mercies help us stand the reconstruction. Even when we aren't yet sure what the final project will look like.

Lisa | January 20, 2011 at 2:19 PM

Karen, all I can say is, "Holy moly! Those sweet kids are so lucky to have you in their lives."
You amaze me with your dedication and sincere love for your students. No doubt you will get through the hard times with the Help you are seeking and you, and all those around you, will be infinitely blessed.

Melanie Jacobson | January 21, 2011 at 3:55 PM

I bet this is why you're a phenomenal teacher. Because you cry for others.

Mrs4444 | February 8, 2011 at 4:01 PM

You're a wonderful teacher, Karen. Beautiful post.