A few gifts from my generous middle school and high school students during our first week at the International Christian School of Budapest:
1. A 12th grader, knowing my love of coffee, brought me a rich sampling from her mission trip to Costa Rica.
2. Another senior offered joyous enthusiasm upon hearing some wedding plans and renewed my frazzled spirit.
3. A young lady who faces various challenges in the classroom and with the complexities of life reminded me that simplicity is worth seeking. And brevity is the soul of wit!
4. One family with whom I've had the delight to interact for several years now brought "Teacher Appreciation" cookies...on the first day of school, before I'd done anything to appreciate.
5. A sophomore whom I've gotten to teach for two years but who is in a different class now ran across the street to give me a warm hug.
6. Hilariously and genuinely, a 17-year-old boy gave wedding venue advice that he'd recently heard-- "The top of Trump Towers would be an awesome place to get married. You should do it."--as he passed me in the gym.
7. And a recent graduate gave me the best gift he could. He complimented my "swag" because I'm now engaged to "a baller". (Translation: your fiancé is cool, so you can't be too lame.)
Our students at ICSB are a crazy, brilliant, loving lot. Though we teachers feel called to give of our comforts, families, paychecks and lives to God and to the kids, these teenagers give right back to us every day.
They are quite a gift.