Someone Is Watching
Our students watch every move we make and how we respond to every situation.
I recently received an interesting email from my brother-in-law. He is currently a police officer in Palo Alto, California, and is doing an outstanding job. Given the nature of his occupation, I assumed the worst when his email read, "You know that feeling you get when you feel like someone is watching you? Well, I had that feeling. I noticed some movement out of the corner of my eye and…It turned out that his watcher was not a disgruntled client or an unwanted guest, but rather deer" eight, to be exact. To many of you, this is not something you would photograph and email to your friends, but it is not a very common occurrence in the Bay Area.
The feeling that someone is watching you when you least expect it is an eerie one; but to an educator, it is a common feeling. Our students watch every move we make and how we respond to every situation. They watch how we respond to certain students and are determined to discover who our "favorites" are. It is so important that we remain consistent regardless of who is watching us.
At the beginning of the school year, were you stricter than you are now? Do you make excuses for the behavior of your students? Do you fail to correct a student because you are afraid of the repercussions from the parent? Perhaps one of the most difficult tasks of an educator is remaining consistent. The Apostle Paul wrote to the church at Philippi that they should pattern their mind and lifestyle after Christ Jesus. Hebrews 13:8 reminds us, "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, to day and for ever." What would we have to look forward to for eternity if Jesus were not consistent? How would we be able to take Him at His Word?
In Paul’s letter to the church at Corinth, he wrote, "Be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord." In ancient Greece, the military forces used a phalanx formation. In this formation, the soldiers would remain in a close unit. The strength of the phalanx was determined by the cohesiveness of the soldiers. If there were inconsistencies in the phalanx, the army would suffer defeat. Wars were won by taking possession of the field. When a phalanx was preparing for an attack, they would literally dig in then be steadfast, unmovable. If the first line of the phalanx broke, so would each of the following lines. The armies with the greatest front lines normally won the battle. One inconsistency would assure defeat.
As Christians, as educators, we must be consistent. From discipline to grading, we cannot waver from day to day or year to year. I am not saying that changes cannot take place. If there are rules to enforce, we must enforce them. Monitor yourself for a day to determine just how consistent you are as an educator. I do not believe anyone purposefully attempts to be inconsistent; but we are human. If our purpose is to influence and change lives for Christ, then we must be consistent. Our schools are only as strong as our least consistent educator is.