Wednesday, March 16, 2011


For the past six years, I've been teaching a class called Heroes to junior high school students in two schools.
It's a class that mines out the strengths of young people and encourages them to make positive choices with the rest of their lives in mind. I have learned so much over the years, probably more than any kid that has ever gone through the class. I find that to teach the class with passion and conviction, you really need to be struggling with your own issues and always becoming more of  hero everyday. I fail miserably, but I keep trying and I keep teaching.

Last week I started the follow-up program with 26 grade nine students. It's called H2. The premise of the follow-up program is to practice being a hero. Using the gifts and abilities that they discovered in Heroes to make a difference in the world around them. There are future leaders, farmers, teachers, artists, doctors, and parents in my class. Every week as I look into the eyes of these kids, I see their doubt. I see their pain. I see their fatigue. I see their desire for something more. My plan is always to speak to that and to breathe life into souls that have lost their sparkle. My favorite part of teaching is when I see the eyes of one of my students getting it. The moment that the light bulb goes on and they realize that their life has a purpose and that they were made uniquely to impact the world around them.

There are many layers to peel back. These kids face insecurities, fears, anger, circumstances beyond their control, pain, criticism, abuse, loneliness, and the belief that they couldn't possibly have a different life. They don't even want to believe that what I am encouraging them to do is possible. Every one of us has these layers that hide our hearts and keep us from living like heroes. We can deal with the all the layers that cover our true selves by believing that those things have power over us and keep us locked up, or we can start  practicing to live our life in a different way. When we start to live our lives with the principles of loyalty, honesty, generosity, kindness, justice, courage, perseverance, and love guiding our thoughts and our actions, the world becomes better. The lives of kids who have been told since they were little that they are useless pieces of skin are given the tools to conquer those crushing words and live with impact and purpose in the world around them. THAT makes me smile.

Each of you is a hero to someone. Use your words and your actions to breathe life into others. The world is desperate for heroes like you.....

1 comment:

  1. Breath,relax, and live life through actions, kind deeds, smiles, words of encouragement, and being a true friend (mentor). God does the rest...Lisa you and like many others are a hero to thoses young teens...Thanks.