Tuesday, November 1, 2016

When Your First Grader is Threatened with His Second Suspension

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

~Romans 8:1~

When your first grader is threatened with his second suspension and it is still not even Thanksgiving break yet; there's grace for that.

My boy is incredibly sweet but has a pattern of making bad choices. You can read about his first suspension here. I think he is becoming a target, honestly. Other kids do the same things that he does but he is the one who seems to get in trouble. This time it was a game of "good guy versus bad guy" on the playground. The game included "pretend" punching. It went both ways but, as you know it, my little man got in trouble. He was seen doing the punch. He was sent to the principal again. (I think they are becoming good friends.)

As he was in the principal's office he was told that he is not allowed to play contact games with other kids, if he does he will be suspended again. I wonder how long this will last? It is an almost impossible rule for the playground where kids run and play and get their energy out. The playground brings back memories of red rover, tag, and crazy games like good guy versus bad guy. Yet, my son is not allowed to touch others. It seems like a good solution but I am not hopeful.

He feels shame. Shame like the leper who has to announce, "unclean, unclean." Shame like something is wrong with him. He is full of energy. Full boy. He is even on medicine now which is helping greatly with his "pause" before making unwise choices. Yet, he is not allowed to be what God made him to be. This is the problem I have with the school system and how they handle kids with special needs. His birth circumstances and brain formation make it nearly impossible for him to succeed in this environment. How do parents with these kind of kids handle this?

For reasons like this and my training and background with education in childhood development, psychology as a social worker and now biblical counselor, I made the choice to home school my older autistic child. I did this because I knew no one could or would help her in the ways that I could. I decided to do all the occupational, social, and other training on my own. It was exhausting but effective. I now look at my son and wonder, is there hope for him in the system? Is there anyone there who can dedicate the balance he needs? Who will understand? And do this with 900 other students? I am not sure.

I do know one thing for sure though, God did make him perfectly and despite hard circumstances. He was knit together in his birth mother's womb, every cell, every molecule, perfect. He was seen in that place. He was protected and given life. God has a purpose and plan and will not leave him or forsake him. God made this little man in His image. God is using each of these situations to mold, shape and sanctify him. He is becoming more Christ-like each time he cries because he cannot achieve the standard of the "good and perfect color."

The truth is that he may never get the above average colors in school but there is no shame in that. There is no condemnation for him in Christ and it is in every tearful and shameful conversation that I get the opportunity to introduce to him again and again the loving arms of our Savior who died on the cross for the good we could not do. A God who doesn't care about performance colors as much as He cares about our hearts and my son, he is winning when it comes to a heart like Christ because he is growing in grace little by little and God is using it all. For that I can be certain and thankful.

What does the future hold for little man in the public school system? That is a story for another day. I hope we can work it out and work together for the sake of this beautiful child. But God only knows the answer to this as we press forward free from condemnation because we stand assured in Christ alone.

Father, please help us to believe your word and the truth that there is no condemnation for us who are in Christ Jesus. Help our children be all you created them to be. Help us not to compare them to others but instead be thankful for their precious uniqueness. Thank you for giving us image bearers to raise up in you. In Jesus Name. Amen.


No comments:

Post a Comment