Academia is not an easy setting to proclaim Christ, but Jesus didn’t call us to do what is easy. As a chemistry professor at our local community college, my faith is not checked at the door. In my discussions with my colleagues, I stand for Christ and the glory of His creation. I don’t have as much freedom in the classroom, but God is not banned. As soon as I get my schedule, I begin praying over my students, asking God to give me a chance to share His grace with them. I make my classroom a safe place to explore and learn. As an example, I expect my students to take responsibility for their learning. I don’t constantly remind them of upcoming due dates for assignments. Several students missed one particular assignment. Per my policy, there would be no make-up, but I felt in this instance, grace was needed. I acknowledged the students who completed their homework on time and asked them to not be angry, but join me in extending grace to those who needed it. Several of the students who had finished the assignment on time later approached me and thanked me for explaining my choice. None of them complained. Conversations like these build a trust with my students, so when they need advice and prayer, they know I am available. During office hours, I have had multiple opportunities to share the love of Jesus and pray with my students. Jesus is not banned from my classroom nor office.
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