Back in September I shared a story with my staff; I spoke of the mustard seed and its microscopic size. I also spoke of how the mustard seed, small in size, when planted, grows to become a large tree. I also explained that if we each had the faith/belief the size of a mustard seed we had the ability to move mountains.
During that meeting, I gave everyone a mustard seed and asked that each of you hold the seed in your hand. I wanted each of you to realize that this seed, so small, could easily be lost in the palm of your hand. I then asked each of you during rough times this year to think back to this seed and the power it represents. I told you to hold fast to it and to think of its mighty strength when you are in the depths of doubt about your abilities or the chances of you finding your way through tough times.
I still have the remainder of the mustard seeds in my office and I often give them to students and sometimes parents during meetings. I explain the significance of the seeds and how our ability to believe in ourselves is crucial to any chance of positive development. Now I want each of you to think back to your mustard seed. Do you still have it? Do you think of it when you are going through tough times? Have you planted any seeds?
Our students, like ourselves are often in great need of seeds. We all have our doubts and are often discouraged by academic failure, poor support systems, lack of confidence, and other challenges dealt to us during life. Through the eyes of our students these challenges may appear to be insurmountable, but with our support and guidance, they are able to reach levels of achievement they could never before imagine.
I challenge each of your to be the beam and not the barrier. Be the beam that helps to support and nurture our students. Find those in greatest need and believe in them; don't just say you believe, but demonstrate your belief with your words and your actions. Don't use your words to tear them down, instead use your words to raise their consciousness to heights greater than they could ever dream.
If you plant such seeds you will see growth. They will grow and prosper and they may one day share their story with you. We sometimes underestimate the impact our words have on the lives of young people. Our words are symbolic to seeds, we must plant them wisely in those barren places in desperate need of a full harvest.
If you still have your seeds, I urge you to take them out and place them in your hands once more. Think of those who may need the nurturing words of encouragement to help them get through a rough patch. Once you identify these students, begin to plant the seeds of celebration and encouragement for the future.