Friday, October 14, 2016

Being Perfect

All my classes take quizzes over the reading of the Scriptures. Some grades are good and some need work. Our faculty never knows when one of the WCS administrators will pop in and visit our classes. The following, from August 24, 2006, is about one of those unexpected visits.

Our Upper School Administrator at Westbury Christian is Dr. David Lacey. As part of his role, Dr. Lacey makes unannounced visits to classrooms as an observer. He popped into my fifth period Bible class several days ago just as I handed out a quiz over an assigned reading. The material covered was taken from Matthew 1 and Luke 2, concerning the birth of Jesus. In a moment of spontaneity, Dr. Lacey asked if he could take the quiz along with the students and I provided him with a copy. As the class finished and we prepared to grade the papers, I asked if anyone thought they did well enough to beat our guest's score. I threw in the proviso that the entire class would garner extra points if that selected student prevailed. Lisette's hand shot up and it was on. I only met Lisette Nanez three weeks ago with the beginning of the school year. A senior, she transferred to WCS from one of the large public high schools in the area. She is a very good student and reportedly an excellent volleyball player. (I haven't seen our Lady Wildcat team yet.) The other day after school, Lisette was in the office checking on an academic question. There was a little girl I know who had come by for tutoring. I explained to Lisette that this girl has endured difficult circumstances in her brief life. For several minutes, Lisette sat down and played the role of the big sister the little girl has never had, showing kindness to a child she will probably never meet again. I don't need to see Lisette's test scores or entrance exam. That encounter told me all I need to know about her character.

Back to the quiz. With the class solidly behind their fellow student, we graded the fifteen question mini-exam. Question for question, Lisette matched Dr. Lacey in correct answers, except for one. His score was perfect while she received a 94%. She still had a chance when I added the bonus question: as rule maker, I decreed that a tie would go to the student. Both contestants missed this multiple choice extra credit question: 

What song played in the background when Winnie Cooper and Kevin Arnold shared the first ever kiss for both of them on The Wonder Years?
(Scroll to bottom for correct answer!) It didn't seem fair. Lisette studied and Dr. Lacey took it blind. Of course, he has the advantage of having searched the scriptures for years but that is irrelevant. She was close...but she lost. The only way she could have won was to be perfect and perfection remains elusive for all of us. One of the oddest verses to me in the Bible is Matthew 5:48 when Jesus commands his listeners to, "Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly father is perfect." How is that possible? The Savior was in the middle of a discourse in which he set standards that all have failed to reach. I think his point was that perfection is not synonymous with sinlessness. Being perfect means completeness through our relationship with Jesus Christ, which is not just possible, it is readily accessible! That gives all of us, regardless of our shortcomings, a fighting chance. Lisette has already informed the good Dr. Lacey that she wants a rematch...and we have a test tomorrow. The gauntlet has been thrown down. This duel could get ugly! 

Applicable quote of the day:
"They say that nobody is perfect. Then they tell you practice makes perfect. I wish they'd make up their minds."
Winston Churchill 

Bonus answer: Percy Sledge's When A Man Loves A Woman 

God bless,
Luke 18:1
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1 comment:

Jon said...

I would have beaten him....HAHAHA