December 4, 2017

Jesus as Teacher; Blind Bartimaeus as a Metaphor for Ourselves

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This blog was written by Learning Leader Diane Stronks who is working alongside co-leader Alice Vanderkooy with Haitian educators and leaders as part of the Ambassador Training: Collaborative Learning Walking Together project.

What a great day!  Alice VanderKooy and I were able to meet with the leadership of CRECH as well as the coordinators/ambassadors of the CRECH schools!  Our way into the idea of collaboration was to start with 'Jesus as the Great Teacher.'

The day started with a deep reflection of the Mark 10:46-52 story of "Blind Bartimaeus."  What struck the participants was the resilience and persistance of Bartimaeus even in the face of opposition, as well as the kindness and gentleness of Jesus in his amazing question: "What do you want me to do for you?"  We reflected on how we are all broken and blind as Bartimaeus.  We don't often know what God is doing for and with us.  We long to see!!  Our hearts and minds need to long for Jesus and for the shalom that he offers.

We also imagined that we, as leaders, are called to be like Jesus.  In our communities, we need to ask our students, our colleagues, our communities... "What do you want me to do for you?"  In other words, how can we build potential, positivity, growth, kindness, compassion, trust, stability and hope in the Christian schools and churches that we serve?

Can we have a growth mindset that looks for the good in others?

Can we believe that making mistakes actually gives us an opportunity to grow and try again?

Can we dare to dream and hope all the while staying humble and waiting for God to appear?

Can we see our students and our colleagues as agents of reconciliation and restoration?

Can we pour into others so that they can become who God intended them to be?

These were the questions and the challenges of the day!  In pairs, and groups and with individual reflections as well as working in circles, the participants experienced a wide varity of pedagogical approaches to further their thinking.  Alice and I were so blessed by the participation, reflections and ideas that were shared.  Haiti is truly blessed to have such an amazing group of leaders imagining its future! 

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