Hidden Hurt

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

Last spring I was interviewing for a grade school principal position. I sat at a table with 9 other people, each of them loaded with questions to ask me. In all honesty, I like these situations and having to be on my toes and quick to answer their prying questions. One question though caught me off guard. The question was, “What knowledge do you have regarding trauma students and how have you dealt with them in your teaching?” Let me first say my wife had not that long ago completed her EMT schooling and certification so you can imagine where my mind went hearing the word trauma, I had been told all about it at home. I had to answer that I really didn’t have any knowledge of dealing with trauma students but would be interested in any resources they had that would help me.

I did have knowledge of these types of students and had dealt with many of them, I had just never heard them called “trauma students.” Trauma students are students who have had to deal with one or more traumatic life event or events growing up. Traumatic life events also are called adverse childhood experiences. I started to learn all that I could about dealing with trauma students and the research was really hard to read. Researches studied thousands of kids who had faced traumatic events such as mental and physical abuse, divorce, alcoholism, and several others. After following these kids for years and throughout adulthood they found that as the number of traumatic events a child had experienced went up the problems they had went up extremely. Problems such as depression, substance abuse, even cancer, and others. Not all the kids had these problems, many developed ways to cope and deal with their traumatic events, but many don’t have the support they need to do that.

I have started learning all I can about these students and how I can best help them in my classroom. You are probably reading this and wondering what does this have to do with a devotional. I was reading my Bible and came across 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 and instantly thought about working with trauma kids.  As a teacher it is my job and responsibility to do everything I can to help these students be successful. As a Christian it is my responsibility to do all I can to comfort and help people who are hurting. I know as I go through difficult times I find peace and comfort knowing that God is in control. I can go to Him and find a friend and a comforter. I need to make sure I am that to other people, a friend and a comforter. Look around you, look really close, you will see people who are hurting. Maybe they are trying to hide the hurt, maybe it is easy to see something is wrong but people around you are hurting. Maybe they need you to step in and show them you care. Step out of your comfort zone and show them how important and valuable they are because they were worth Jesus dying for them! If they are that precocious to Him they should be that precious to us too!

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