Gwyn Schneck, MEd, has a unique set of skills allowing her to guide students into promising opportunities and outcomes Read More
“My mom kicked me out.” I looked up and there stood Michelle, 7 months pregnant and with a one year old son on her hip. Tears ran down her red face. She was barefoot and the baby only had on a diaper. It was a hot day in May and I had just hung up the telephone. As a guidance counselor, it fell on me to call parents and let them know their senior would not be graduating. Usually it wasn’t a surprise, but it was always a disappointment. I couldn’t believe Michelle had arrived at my office so quickly after my phone call. Obviously, her mom told her to leave the minute she hung up the phone. She explained to me through sobs that due to failing the final exam in Senior English, she would not graduate. She missed the D to pass by 2 points.
I went upstairs to find her teacher, while she pulled herself together in my office. Frankly, I found it hard to believe he would let 2 points keep a teen mom, who was currently pregnant with her second baby, from graduating! I found him in his classroom grading papers. After a short discussion, it was very clear to me that he would not help her, re-grade the exam, or allow her to do any make-up assignment. She would not graduate. I walked back to my office, dreading to tell Michelle the bad news. As I tried to give her encouragement and summer school information, Michelle’s mom joined us in my office. We all cried and tried to be strong. I begged her to retake the class in summer school and graduate before the baby was born.
The way Michelle’s teacher treated her is very similar to how Pharaoh responded to Moses and Aaron. One would think that after all of the wonders that Moses and Aaron performed, Pharaoh would have been frightened and moved into submission. But no, God was in control. God knew that his miracles would be multiplied and His name would be glorified through Pharaoh’s hardened heart. Thanks to this hard heart, the first Passover began. After Passover, and the death of the firstborn sons of Egypt, the Egyptians begged the Israelites to leave. They even gave the Israelites a large part of the wealth of the Egyptian nation. This money helped the Israelites build the first tabernacle.
Many times we don’t like the idea that God can harden people’s hearts that may be in the paths of our kids. But if His glory can be multiplied in their life by going the harder and longer route, then He loves them enough to cause this reaction. He will be glorified and use the harder path for good in our children’s lives just has he did for the Israelites.
The summer flew by and truthfully I didn’t think of Michelle very often. The new school year started and was as busy as always. About the second month of school, I looked up and there stood Michelle again. This time she held a new baby and a toddler was clinging to her leg. Her mom was right behind her. “I did it,” she exclaimed, “I graduated.” The tears once again were flowing down all of our faces. She clutched her diploma in her hand. The determination and self-confidence in her voice and in her eyes was something no one could take away. She learned more about herself because of that “F” than any other experience of high school. I never thought an “F” could be so good.