Challenges and Rewards

I have been really pondering on this a lot lately. It is really easy to question our Heavenly Father's reasons for things that happen to us. I have to admit that I have let this attitude really eat away at me for the past few days. I have had a hard time this week feeling like a good person, a person of worth. I know that my wife and children love me (thank goodness) and I know that I have good friends around me (for which I am very thankful), but I still find myself sinking further and further into darkness and depression.

I over heard my students talking about how you could die if you accidentally took too many pills. I chastised them for talking about such things. Inside it brought up a lot or sorrow and pain. You see, I lost a really good friend several years ago to that very thing. He didn't think there was any other way out. He didn't think that anyone cared. Then he was gone. Those feelings have been eating at me too. He tried to call me the night he took his own life, and I wasn't home. I didn't see the caller ID until the next day. Could I have made a difference in the choice that he made? Would he still he around to make me laugh today and see my kids if I had been more aware! I know it isn't my fault, and I know that things happen for a reason, even if we don't know what it is right now.

This week I have been questioning my talents and abilities as a teacher. It seems that I have the same problems year after year. Now, using simple deduction, I am the only constant year after year. So hence, I am led to believe that I am the cause of my own trials and frustrations. Knowing this is true for all people, I shouldn't feel all that bad, after all, if EVERYONE brings it on themselves, then I am like everyone else. But that explanation isn't going to cut it this time. I could easily list my weaknesses here (but won't out of embarrassment for the length would be) and discuss each one. However, that wouldn't prove helpful either. So, let's move to the Rewards part of this post.

So, as I have pondered, stewed, fumed, berated myself, and finally have given up and lost hope, I realized that I am looking at this all wrong. As I thought about all the problems I am currently having, I have learned that I use the word "I" a lot! My wife did an amazing FHE on looking for the good in others. I think it was for me. Each night since, we have taken a few minutes after scriptures and discussed and written down all the good things we have seen other family members do. I need to have one of those notes stapled to my forehead.

It seems that when I step in my job location, all that I know, feel, love, and understand gets turned on its head. It confuses and frustrates me as to why I can't keep things in perspective. Why do I care if the kids talk a little? Why should it matter if the kids don't bring their homework or sit and do nothing? Or...
I am so confused as to why I can't let go and let God. Will I feel like a better teacher? Will I feel like more of a failure? Why? What are the answers?

My reward is this: I know that God loves me. I am his son and he won't give me more than I can handle. Does that make everything all better right now?  Unfortunately no. Does it make me feel better at this moment? A little bit. It is still hard to see the goal when the forrest of anger, frustration, and despair spring up to block the way. But I will make it through...I will...

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