There is no sufficient substitute to the power of God. When one’s life becomes a testament to the work of creativity through right relations, creative faith, that power becomes beautiful.
I want to speak briefly about my relationships. First the children. I’m surrounded by them daily. In the first grade class I assist, I am tested by them and treated with their trust. It’s quite an experience, an exceptional experience, full of great enthusiasm. I am discovering how to trust God through witnessing their trust in me. Their hours are perfectly and carefully ordered. Their bodies secure and disciplined through gentle nudges of educational guidance. I am learning so much more than I ever expected. They express their humanity plainly, their tears are often. I consistently mistake their playfulness for disrespect and though play is an intervention against conformity, their refusals flow from an innocence I am not ready to fully believe. They are me. My disbelief in myself is mirrored back to me in their refusals to obey, in their flailing, silly bodies.
AND they trust us, they trust me with their bodies and their time. Education is sacred. I have a structural and sociological critique about my students that I would like to note briefly. These children are the products of an accumulation of core privilege unmatched in any human age thus far. The majority of families building these children are affluent, well adjusted, highly skilled leaders and laborers in San Francisco, one if not the pinnacle of Western Civilization development. Their vehicles speak this privilege, but not as much as do their bodies. The majority of these children highlight the exceptional difference privilege offers their life potential and few others show the deep shadow that haunts the results of accumulated privilege – the historical and contemporary violence irrevocably bound up with it, constituting its existence. We still step forward, and in the end we find this good.
More times then I can count I have been mistaken about their intentions, their actions critique the very authority I hold over them. I wonder what power I assume is mine in their presence and what portions of myself I extend in need of validation at their expense, or in their favor. Still, we all know that as an adult I am their greater, their teacher, and not the other way around. Power flows one way in our exchange and I wonder about the dominance of that condition.