“I don’t like second grade.”
She said it to me with no emotion or feeling either one. No tears, no anger, no boredom, no frustration. Simply this — “I don’t like second grade.”
She’s only ever loved school, every last part of school, so this concerned me. I began to ask why she doesn’t like second grade, and the answer came before I could even finish the question…
“It’s not as easy as first grade.”
Second grade in and of itself is likely a challenge to my late-July baby, who was barely seven when she started this school year. The maturity she still lacks in comparison to her classmates will likely always be a struggle as she moves through grades, as will be the dexterity, motor skills, and athletic abilities that she tends to find challenging. Added to this, second grade dual language begins pushing students past just a comprehension of their second language. They’re expected to produce the second language — through writing, through speaking, through reading, and through testing. For the girl who had never even heard a word of Spanish until last year, this is a stretch.
Yes. Second grade is hard.
I asked her what she could do to make things better. And she replied, “I could go back to first grade.”
First grade. Where she would know the answers all the time, where she wouldn’t have to try so hard, where everything would come naturally, and where it would be easy. So easy.
But she wouldn’t grow. She wouldn’t learn. She wouldn’t move beyond the immaturity she finds herself in right now. And she wouldn’t come to the valuable conclusion that we should all be privileged enough to come to so early on in life — that we don’t know it all.
This hard place, this unlikeable second grade, is a good place for her. For her own good. To make her into who she’s going to be.
I find myself, right now, in a “I don’t like it” season of faith. I want things to be easy, to know what God is doing, to be able to trust in my own abilities, and to be self-sufficient. It’s hard, being in a place where my trust has to be in Christ. And I find myself looking back to a more immature place and saying, “I want to go back there, because it’s easy.”
What value is there, though, in never moving forward? What can be accomplished or gained from being in a season past, where the lessons have been learned and the growth has already plateaued? What growth can come from being who we were and not moving on to who we can become?
And what faith can be found when we only stay in the places that require no trust in Christ at all?
Praying for perspective as we press on to know Him better…