Saturday, October 31, 2015

The Razor's Edge

If the name Lowell sounds familiar, it should be noted that last night I ran an entry I wrote about him in 2007 when he was a second grader. Well, you are going to get a double dose of Lowell this weekend. I just graded his Test # 6 a few minutes ago- he made a 100%. No surprise there as he is bound and determined to hit the century mark for his Gospels' grade this nine weeks and he is on track. But there were several others who also scored a perfect paper so this isn't about an exam without mistakes. Instead, this is about Lowell being at my classroom door yesterday at 7 AM. He wasn't there for a review or tutoring or to ask about an assignment. No, he asked me for a ......... razor. He told me he had looked in the mirror on the way to school and realized he had forgotten to shave. Lowell was taking no chances that he might receive a detention; our young men are not allowed to have facial hair at WCS. So we went on a search for a razor. They used to have them in our Upper School Office but a tour of the store room was fruitless. Gracie Greer, one of our administrators, suggested Lowell find Kay Brownback, our school nurse, believing she might be in possession of some shaving equipment. As Lowell departed the office, Nathan Wagner, our high school principal, came in. I told Nathan about Lowell and he dug into his desk, retrieving one of those electric face trimmers. I took it to Lowell who I found shaving in the front of the mirror in our clinic. Needless to say, Lowell came into sixth period a clean shaven young man.

Let me put some perspective on this situation with Lowell. First, I would never have noticed he needed to shave; I'm not very observant. Secondly, in my eighteen years at Westbury Christian School, I don't think I have ever witnessed a shaving detention being issued without a warning first, as in, "If you haven't shaved by tomorrow, I'm going to have to write you up." But that would not have been good enough for Lowell. He's his own person but he also cares what his teachers think of him. I think he would be disheartened if anyone even had a fleeting thought that he was living outside the spirit, if not the letter, of the rule book. I wish more of us were like that. We tend to fall on the side of  'it's not that big a deal' or 'nobody will notice.' And yet the scriptures tell us 'avoid the very appearance of evil' (1 Thessalonians 5:22) and Paul further states there should not even be a hint of impure things among believers in Ephesians 5:3. I hear kids say constantly that a movie or song or show isn't that bad- OK, adults say it, too. Not Lowell. He wants both feet firmly planted on the side of right; he wants to leave no doubt  where he stands. What a good lesson for me. Every day at 10:40 AM when Lowell leaves my room, he turns around and tells me, "Have a blessed day, Coach Hawley." Sometimes my day is blessed simply because of Lowell.

Applicable quote of the day:
'I really can't be bothered going to a barber. And shaving every morning, that's nightmarish. I spent my teenage years covered in tiny little bits of toilet paper.'

Alan Moore

God bless,
Luke 18:1
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