Posts Tagged ‘encouragement’

Sarah and Mrs. Z: A Teacher’s Story

April 25, 2012

We are all messengers; the way we live our lives, and how we show up in the world, are messages that we broadcast every minute of every day. Lou Zywicki Prudhomme, a high school teacher from Carlton, Minnesota, thought her message of encouragement and hope hadn’t made much of an impact on her students, until a chance encounter came at just the right time to provide her with encouragement and hope in her own hour of need. This story from the April 2012 issue of Guideposts moved me to tears. I trust it will touch your heart as well.

GUIDED BY HEAVEN’S HAND TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
A reunion with a once-troubled former student helps a teacher deal with her grief

Lou Zywicki Prudhomme

I published an article in Guideposts magazine a little over six years ago: Sarah’s Story, about a troubled eleventh grader in the English class I taught at a vocational high school in Duluth, Minnesota. Sarah was one of the angriest students I had ever taught. But I knew that her anger was simply a defense she’d built up against her deeper feelings of fear and hurt.

Sarah had grown up in an abusive home and had then lived on the streets before entering foster care. Even then she remained disruptive and confrontational—with her fellow students and especially with me, whom she saw as just another authority figure who couldn’t be trusted. She seemed to have no interest in her future.

I was at a loss. I was proud of my teaching, but I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to reach Sarah. Lord, I’d prayed, help me find the key to Sarah’s heart.

Then one day I stumbled onto something that I hoped would grab her attention, a Northern (more…)