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Posts Tagged ‘#takeabreak’

holiday

Having just returned from a week of holiday-ing on the west coast of Oregon, I am still living in the residual joy of that time away from the day-to-day responsibilities.

Getting away is amazing. Away from work, and the phone, and making dinner, and doing laundry, and all the rest of the same old, same old.

Then we return home, after time away, and revel in that very same, same old. We return and have refreshed thoughts about our jobs, try new recipes, make our suitcase-smelling clothes fresh and clean and reach for the phone to re-connect with our families and friends.

According to the definition (above) a holiday is a holy day, a day when work is suspended to celebrate an event … you know, an event, like Monday, or August, or Christmas, or … (you fill in the blank).

Though an extended time away from work is a great blessing, a holiday can be any day that we bring a holiday mindset into its beginning and sprinkle it through to evening.

As I prepare my mind for the beginning of a new sc—l year (I am simply not ready to say the word yet 😉 ), I am thinking that I need to incorporate the idea of holiday into every week.

I need to spend my lunch break, at work, going for a walk, or chatting with a co-worker about anything but work.

I need to include a dinner each week in candlelight.

I need to spend the end of my day reading a fiction novel (no self-help, DIY or factual reading).

I need to walk on a beach … any beach, at least once a month (even in the rain … I love it on vacation, so why not on a Saturday afternoon in November?).

I need to make plans with those people who we always say, “we should get together sometime,” and never do. Holidays are perfect for those sometimes.

I need to laugh, from the belly.

I need to dream.

I need to reflect.

I need to plan and look forward to the next vacation holiday, be it a weekend or a longer time away.

What do you need to do, in order to attain more holidays throughout your year?

“The holiest of all holidays are those
Kept by ourselves in silence and apart;
The secret anniversaries of the heart,
When the full river of feeling overflows;—
The happy days unclouded to their close;
The sudden joys that out of darkness start
As flames from ashes; swift desires that dart
Like swallows singing down each wind that blows!
White as the gleam of a receding sail,
White as a cloud that floats and fades in air,
White as the whitest lily on a stream,
These tender memories are;—a fairy tale
Of some enchanted land we know not where,
But lovely as a landscape in a dream.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

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IMG_2175

In our school, this is the season of report cards. It seems as though, for staff, that they have been in process for about a month.

In just a couple of days students and their parents will open the envelopes of doom the assessments of work, behavior and effort. There will be praises and punishments resulting from these pieces of paper. There will be triumphant cries, and tears. There will be rewards and removals of privileges.

But …

do the report cards report on learning?

That is the question of the day, within the hallowed halls of educational places all over. The traditional methods of assessing learning are being looked at from every angle. As with many traditional practices in a variety of areas of life, what is done because it has always been done that way, assessment is being evaluated.

When we read a report card, there are (generally) two important parts:

  • the mark … be it a number or letter representing a range of understanding
  • the comment … included within may be effort, behavior, an example of a situation

The mark often represents how the student has done on tests, homework and assignments. The comment can be quite subjective, reflecting the relationship between the student and teacher, as well as the observations of the teacher.

These are okay assessments … not all bad. They are not, though, complete indicators of learning.

The following image/quote would reverberate for most teachers, school administrators, educational assistants:

IMG_2178Oh sure, there are a few educators who are just in it for the money (insert extreme laughter here), the long summer breaks or who simply got into the wrong profession. But those are the rare exception, not the norm.

The desire of the educator, who is called to their work. is not that a piece of paper, handed out two or three times a year, define a student. The greatest desire is that each student learn. That each student succeed, in some way (maybe not even academically), in their life. That each student know what their passion is, and how to make it their life’s work.

Truly gifted and called educators care more about who the student becomes, rather than what the report card assesses.

May we parents all, before opening that report card, look our children in the eyes and say, “I love you. I love who you are and who you were created to be. Opening this report card will not change that reality.”

 

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My post today is not one that I wrote, and I do not even know who wrote it, so I cannot give them the credit. What I do know is that I recently heard it, just when I needed the reminder of the message within. So, today, with back to school approaching, I am sharing this post with you, praying that you receive it just when and where you need it.

THE DEVIL’S CONVENTION
Are You Too Busy For Christ?
Keep The Christians Busy
Satan called a worldwide convention.
In his opening address to his assembled demons he said:
“We cannot keep the Christians from going to church. We cannot keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth. We cannot even keep them from conservative values.

Nevertheless, we can do something else. We can keep them from forming an intimate, abiding relationship with Christ. If they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken.

So, let them go to church, let them have their conservative lifestyle, but steal their time, so they cannot gain that relationship.
This is what I want you to do. Distract them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection!”
“How shall we do this?” shouted the demons.
“Keep them busy with the non-essentials of life. Invent schemes to occupy their time.” he answered. “Tempt them to spend, spend, spend, then borrow, borrow, borrow. Convince the wives to go to work for long hours and the husbands to work 6 or 7 days a week, 10 – 12 hours a day, so they can afford their lifestyles. Keep them from spending time with
their children. As their family fragments, soon their homes will offer no escape from the pressures of work.

Also:
*Super-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still small voice.
*Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive, and to keep the TV, VCR, CD players and PCs
going constantly in their homes.
*See to it that every store and restaurant in the world blares secular music constantly. This will jam their minds and break
that union with Christ.
*Fill their coffee tables with secular magazines and newspapers.
*Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day.
*Invade their driving moments with billboards.
*Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, sweepstakes, mail order catalogs, and every kind of newsletter and promotional
offering, free products, services, and false hopes.
*In their recreation, let them be excessive. Have them return from their recreation exhausted, disquieted, and
unprepared for the coming week.
*Do not let them go out in nature to reflect on God’ s wonders. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events,
concerts, and movies instead.
*When they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled
consciences and unsettled emotion.
*Let them be involved in soul-winning, but crowd their lives with so many good causes they have no time to seek power
from Christ in prayer.

Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause.”
Convention Aftermath
It was quite a convention. The demons went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get busy, busy, busy and rush here and there.
Has the devil been successful at his scheme? You be the judge.
How about this definition of BUSY: Being Under Satan’s Yoke.
Author Unknown

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