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I'm Not Very Sentimental

Thomas Whitley

...but last night's service recognizing Trinity and I for our service at the church we are leaving in Shelby was certainly one that touched me. Basically, people just got up and spoke about us and to us, many reminiscing about adventures and laughs we had shared. It was evident that we made an impact on the lives of the people of the church, as they have made an impact on ours. The most moving part of the service, though, was hearing my youth stand up and tell me how I had helped them become who they are today, students who can think for themselves, read the Bible for themselves, and understand and interpret God for themselves. They realize that they don't have all the answers, but they also realize that no one else does either.

Most of you know that I feel like my "calling" is to the classroom, and not necessarily to local church ministry. Because of that these past 3 years have been challenging for me, but have also grown me. When I started at the church 3 years ago, I had two basic goals: to let the youth know that I cared and to teach them that they are just as capable of reading and interpreting the Bible and thinking about life as anyone else in the world. Last night I received confirmation that I was successful in this endeavor. It is humbling to know that I have impacted their lives so, that I have been one person who has helped them understand their place in the world and to value who they are as a person. I hope they never forgot those lessons and that I never cease to leave that kind of imprint on others.