Twenty-three years old and fresh out of college, I was hired to teach freshman English at a rural Texas high school. I was poorly equipped for the job. Having decided at the last minute to postpone graduate school, I had little pedagogical training and no student teaching experience. With these glaring shortcomings I was amazed I even got the job. However, as time went on I began to realize that my lack of professional knowledge was the least of my problems.

The product of a broken home as a teen and plagued by depression ever since, I was still too focused on my own life’s losses to care deeply about others. Moreover, having married nearly on the heels of completing high school, then relying on my husband’s financial and emotional support to get me through college, I had not yet learned toappreciate self-reliance. I had not yet learned what it meant to rest in God’s »

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