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It’s funny the things you remember from high school.

Like Mr. Plath, our geometry teacher. We did not like to do proofs. Which progression of theorems could we use to prove or disprove the congruence or incongruence of the angles and the line segments of each of the images in our homework?

And when we couldn’t find the theorem that would fit what we could ‘see’ was true – well, we came up with the most logical theorem of them all: the ‘straight eye theorem.’ Mr. Plath found that amusing, but our special theorem never made it into the approved list of theorems we could use. His picture in the yearbook that year was accompanied by the caption ‘you use the straight eye theorem, right?’

The year was 1981.

I was a junior at Fox Valley Lutheran High School in Appleton, Wisconsin (go Packers!)

Mr. Bock (Wally) was my religion teacher that year.

There is only one thing I remember from his class.

I am a child of God.

Every day we had an assignment to do, and on our papers, every time we wrote our name, he asked us to write ‘child of God’ in the space right underneath our name.

Such a simple thing.

Done over and over again – to break through those tough, too cool for school, high schooler heads.

I was recently talking to a classmate of mine, who now teaches at our old high school, and I asked her if she remembered Mr. Bock’s tradition of having us write ‘child of God’ under our names on our papers.

She said yes, and as a matter of fact, she was recently talking with some ’84 graduates whose children she now taught, and they were reminiscing about that very thing. And how sometimes, Mr. Bock would get us to fist pump in the air and say ‘I AM a child of God.’

What a legacy. I wonder if he had any idea that we would still remember and talk about it 34 years later. Thank you, Mr. Bock, for the way that you impacted my life for God.

I am a child of God.

That is my identity – above and in combination with everything else: daughter, sister, wife, mother, co worker, customer, neighbor, friend, teacher. I am a child of God. His precious child, dearly loved.

It’s not logical, you can’t ‘see’ it, but it’s true.

Oh that we would remember and believe it every day.

Oh that there is some way that we can pass it on to our children.

1 John 3:1. ‘How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!’


Renee Borgmann is Messiah’s Director of Children’s Ministry. On this blog she writes and reflects about Bible lessons that the children of Messiah learn throughout the year.

© 2015 Messiah Lutheran Church