"I was brutish and ignorant; I was like a beast towards you. Nevertheless, I am continually with you, you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will receive me to glory.
We're on to our last three days of guest post week! Here is Part 2 of Drew's post from yesterday. I hope you're blessed by this and that you will start to truly believe that Jesus is your Savior in your heart and not only in your mind! Love you all!
I was at a complete loss as to what to say. I had never had a professor treat me in this manner. I mean, sure, I had debated with professors before on differences of opinion, but this was taking things to another level.
I said one more quick prayer in head, as I really wanted a way to leave. Suddenly, the words I needed to say popped into my mind, and came out of my mouth before I could even understand what I was saying.
I said calmly, “Well, then I feel sorry for you.”
With that, I turned around and began leaving the classroom. As I turned, I caught a glance of the student behind me, a young woman. Her mouth was wide open, as she looked completely stunned.
As I walked out of the classroom, Mr. Ren began yelling at my back, “Drew! Come back here! Drew!”
I waved my hand dismissively, and without looking back, said, “I gotta get to my next class.”
But before I went to my next class, I took a detour to my car in the college parking lot. I quickly sat down in the driver’s seat and began letting out huge breaths I didn’t know I was keeping in. My heart was thumping in my chest, and it felt like a weight have finally been lifted from my head.
The prevailing thought in my head was, “Did that really just happen?” Everything felt so surreal.
I even wondered if it had actually happened. I was still shaking from the experience.
When I returned home later that day, I told my parents the whole story. Having never had an experience like this before, I asked my parents if I had gone too far in angering a teacher.
“No, not at all!” My dad said, smiling. “You did the right thing. We’re proud of you.”
I was comforted by their words, but I was still apprehensive about the next time I would attend Mr. Ren’s class. Moreover, as the days of the weekend went by, I began to become anxious about my final grade in the class overall. What if Mr. Ren became vengeful? What if he decided to give me a poor grade on all of my papers from now on? What if my one act of standing up to him doomed me to receive a failing grade in the class? I needed good grades to become accepted to a higher college. If I received a
poor grade (or worse, a failing grade) in this class, it could ruin my chances of ever getting a degree, dooming my future. As the days passed, my worry continued to build.
The day came, and on the way to college, I played worship music and prayed for courage. I was still worried, but the worship and prayer calmed me considerably. I entered the classroom and sat in the front row, determined not to show any fear. After what seemed like an eternity, Mr. Ren entered the classroom. He taught the class as usual, but with one key difference. Throughout the entire class, he would not look me in the eye. Even though I was sitting right in front of him, he never looked at me for the entire hour and fifteen minutes of class.
I was stunned. If anything, I should be afraid to look at him! I was the student, and he was the teacher. He had control of my grade. Why would he be afraid of me? By all earthly logic, he was the authority figure with the most power in the room. But it was then that I realized something.
I was the most powerful person in the room. Since I was the only Christian in the classroom, by definition, I was the most powerful person in the spiritual realm. I may have had no authority in the natural, but in the spiritual world, Christ in me gave me the highest authority. Of course, I had always known these truths – in my mind. But it was on that day that I saw a very tangible and real example of God’s power.
My belief became even more real the next time I had to write a paper for the class. Again, the professor gave us one very biased source to comment on real history. And again, I did as much as I could to write the truth within the given guidelines. And again, the professor was not pleased, giving me a B and many scathing remarks in the margins of my paper when it was returned.
I did not care to talk to my professor about my papers any more, but I did notice something interesting about the grade he gave me. I saw the letter ‘B’ written largely in dark blue ink. But I also saw a letter crossed out vigorously in the same ink. Upon further inspection, I saw that it was a cursive ‘C’ that had been crossed out.
It took a few minutes for me to understand what I was seeing. My professor, who did not like me at all, inexplicably backtracked on giving me a ‘C’ and instead gave me a better grade. Again, I was shown that my professor did not have the ultimate say on my grade – or my future. God had the final say.
It was at this moment, among other events in my life around that time, when the “faith of my fathers” become my faith. I saw firsthand that God fights for his children, if we will only trust in His goodness, and step out in faith for Him and His principles. “If God is for us, who can stand against us?” (Romans 8:31b NIV). These were no longer words on a page for me. It was a reality. A reality that was more real than a teacher’s power over my grade. More real than any earthly authority. God’s power and control over our lives is real. And more than that, His goodness is real. And if we believe that, we too can stand before Nebuchadnezzar and stand when everyone else kneels. We can remind the world that there is a power greater than that of man. And in doing so, remind them that there is a God who will judge evil, and who will also forgive if they will only surrender. I still pray for Mr. Ren that he will be saved someday. I haven’t seen him since, but I hope that I will see him someday in heaven.
“See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction” (Isaiah 48:10 NIV). “In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed” (1 Peter 1:6-7). “I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes” (Psalm 119:99 NIV). “Therefore I will teach them— this time I will teach them my power and might. Then they will know that my name is the LORD” (Jeremiah 16:21 NIV).
"I have said these things to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but take heart;
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"I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all of my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds."