Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas

Opinion

August 15, 2013

Back to School thoughts

Just when summer starts to sizzle, it is almost over.  The aisles at Walmart and Target are already filled with crayons, construction paper and glue. Nothing is more inspiring than the unspoiled thrill of children gathering their supplies to go back to school.

When my wife was a child she spent days organizing her supplies in her backpack anticipating the first day back at her desk. When she became a kindergarten teacher, she faced the greater challenge of organizing children armed with crayons and markers in a room with freshly painted walls.

It will soon be time to put away the lazy days of sleeping late, TV, video games, camp and vacations to wake before sunrise and wait for the bus. Going back to school forms the rhythm of our lives, as surely as the first crisp scent of fall and the turning of green leaves to gold. We will soon wake up to the echo of school bands, coaches’ whistles and the smack of shoulder pads practicing for the big game.  

Going back to school is an international event. In Latvia children of all ages, whether starting first grade or a Masters degree, celebrate the start of school with flowers on Sept. 1. In Ghana, Liberia and Guinea grinning children, eager with anticipation, line up to learn. Teaching and learning is essential to the human experience, filling the mind with hope and dreams for the future.

Jesus said “The student is not above the teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like their teacher.” Who we follow as our teacher matters.

Perhaps many find Christianity boring and meaningless because they have never discovered the joy of following the Master Teacher and learning from Him daily. Jesus’ invitation to follow Him is an invitation to each of us to go “back to school” with all the child-like enthusiasm and wonder of children skipping expectantly onto the school yard. That is the meaning of the word, disciple.

I was visiting with my best friend’s seven-year-old granddaughter, a very bright girl entering second grade. I said, “You are very smart. But it is important as you grow up to be wise.” I asked, “Do you know the difference between being smart and being wise?”  “Sure,” she said, “smart is knowing that 3 + 3 equals 6. Wise is doing the right thing.” I think she nailed it.

No person ever lived that was as wise as Jesus. Jesus concludes the Sermon on the Mount by telling the story of two men who built houses, one on the sand and one on rock.  When the storm came, the house on the sand crumbled and the house built on rock survived.  

“Everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them,” Jesus said, “may be compared to the wise man who built his house upon the rock.”

                        —————

Bill Tinsley is former Associate Executive for the Baptist General Convention of Texas. He lives with his wife, Jackie, in Rockwall. He may be reached by email bill@tinsleycenter.com. Want to “Soundoff” on this column? Email: soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg Spam french fries

    I saw a relatively disturbing video and article on Yahoo which touted making Spam French fires to go alongside your big old ground chuck burger. I just can’t imagine a basket full of these deep-fried cholesterol-loaded sticks, but there they were, bigger than Texas.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Janet Jacobs Dumb and dumber in the blotter

    When it comes to dumb criminals, nothing beats the would-be gang of car burglars who tried to break into a car in Tampa, Florida, this past week.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Belcher, Bob.jpg ‘Change’ — old "buzz word" shows up in our town

    If you pay much attention when you’re driving around town lately (and I really hope that you do — pay attention, that is) you can’t help but admit we’ve seen some “change” as of late. And, contrary to the political connotations that word will forever carry with it now, that “change” we’re seeing is good.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Tinsley Germany present and past

    Last Sunday evening my wife and I stood on the balcony of our apartment in Nuremberg and watched as fireworks lit up the sky.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg Where strawberries are king

    In 1949, when Stilwell, Oklahoma’s “Strawberry Festival” was just one year old, crooners were applauded when they cut loose with Dear Hearts and Gentle People.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg My TV is held hostage

    Give me back my TV! The Sunday sports fare today is just pitiful as far as I am concerned. Over the past weeks, my normal sports programs has been rudely preempted by endless hours of Wimbledon tennis, the Tour de France, assorted motor sports, and the nauseating mega-million signing sagas of LeBron James and Carmello Anthony

    July 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Janet Jacobs Thoughts from abroad

    So, with the generosity of Mastercard and warm encouragement of my friends who went with me, I went to Italy on vacation. Not Italy, Texas, the one in Europe.

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • deannakirk.jpg For a community that’s hurting

    I think all would agree that our community is hurting right now.
    It seems like some weeks, our quota of tragedy and loss just goes through the roof. This is one of those weeks.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Tinsley An inspiring life

    Last week, while Americans prepared their fireworks for the fourth of July, Louis Zamparini quietly slipped the bonds of this earth at the age of 97.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg The 'H-O-A' and You

    If you live in Florida, homeowner associations (HOAs) are pretty much a fact of life. An HOA is a corporation formed, usually by a real estate developer, for the purpose of marketing, managing, and selling homes, condominiums, and apartments within a new residential development.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo