For the first time in years, I didn't receive any ties for Christmas even though some have been given to me earlier in the school year. I've told you that I have two young ladies, Angela and Margaret, who rate the appropriateness of my wardrobe daily and it usually revolves around my matching of tie and shirt. Sometimes as adults, we struggle with appropriateness in our career decisions as well. This is from February 7, 2006.
I'm wearing a Christmas tie today. It is six weeks past the holiday but there is a reason. I've worn a tie each day since the beginning of school and have yet to repeat my choice of neck wear. Several days ago, I discovered a tie with a holiday scene which I had overlooked. To extend my streak for another day, Santa and his reindeer complemented my outfit, although not well. The point is this: my tie is not appropriate for February. I get by with it because I am a guy with no fashion sense. I wish life was always that tolerant! Last week, a high school Spanish teacher in Lexington, Kentucky lost his job after showing an inappropriate movie in class. The film, The 40 Year Old Virgin, has an R rating and no connection to lesson plans. The teacher at Tates Creek High School was quoted as saying he used the video when a student brought it and told him it was funny. Based on that recommendation, the movie was viewed, the teacher was suspended, and the teacher resigned. We all make mistakes in the classroom; I have made more than my share. But when a teacher's activity in a classroom makes national news, it usually is for the wrong reasons.
We learn appropriate behavior as we mature. There are markers which indicate to doctors if a child is progressing at a normal rate of development. We learn there are certain things we do not say in public. We understand that we do not go outside without clothes. We find out what is acceptable in society and what is not tolerated. We become aware of the way to behave in worship services, at funerals and weddings, and in school. There is right and wrong. There is APPROPRIATE and INAPPROPRIATE. Part of our learning comes from training, part from observation. If our standard is simply what we witness in the world, maybe what that teacher did was not out of the ordinary and maybe excusable. But, if we use the higher standards set forth in the scriptures, those kind of lapses in judgement are far less likely to occur. Appropriate is only found twice in the Bible. In Genesis 49, Jacob gives a blessing to each of his twelve sons that was individually appropriate. Paul writes in 1 Timothy 2 that good deeds are appropriate for women who declare their allegiance to the Lord. Reasonable adults understand that actions should fit situations and when ours do not, it is evident. It is evident even to a child.Applicable quote of the day:
"What is the appropriate behavior for a man or a woman in the midst of this world where each person is clinging to his piece of debris? What's the proper salutation between people as they pass each other in this flood?"Leonard CohenGod bless,
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