It takes a village to raise a child. For many children, school is a home away from home where friendships are formed, life lessons are learned, and character is developed. Some children find school to be a safe haven: refuge from unhappiness or discouragement. Others develop a desire to push themselves past their comfort zone at school and dream about their future career paths. It is in this setting that their teacher creates community and strives to inspire boys and girls to reach for the stars.

My second-grade teacher, Martha Ezzard, was one of those teachers for me. Tall and beautiful, she had high expectations, and we reached for them. In her class, we moved past daily work and embarked on great adventures in our studies. The light of learning was ablaze in my second-grade classroom and Mrs. Ezzard instilled in me the desire to teach.

To teach is indeed a special calling to love God's children in those home-away-from-home classrooms. While it is not a profession that leads to overflowing bank accounts or hefty retirement portfolios, teaching has its own unique set of rewards. The rewards of teaching come in comforting hugs when a child faces uncertain times in their home life and high fives when they are happy about something and want to share it. It comes when shy students gather enough courage to step past their comfort zone to share aloud. Teachers are definitely rewarded when past students return to share their life stories years later.

It does take a village to raise a child. Jesus places parents, grandparents, teachers, coaches, preachers, scout leaders and friends in our children's lives as mentors and supporters for a reason. It's His plan! May we all answer His call to love and nurture children just as He continues to love and care for us.

Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6

About the Contributor

Scottie Lummus teaches 4th grade at Oakbrook Prep. She and her husband, Stan, are the parents of two married daughters and proud—very proud—grandparents of Nora Biber and a second sweet baby on the way.