Ask any student who’s been on the SALTS grade 8 sailing trip, they’ll talk for hours about their five days aboard a tall ship in the Salish sea; hauling the sails, taking the wheel, and singing their hearts out at the evening “mug up.” Some of them might also tell you about seasickness.

That Queasy Feeling

Typically, we have one good day of sailing, with a steady wind. But with a good wind, we also experience some larger waves, causing the ship to pitch and roll a little. If this happens while some students are below deck, stomachs can get queasy. The solution is usually simple: head up on deck so your eyes can find balance by registering the motion against the horizon or a point of land.

You need to fix your eyes on something that is not moving.

It is the same for us as school starts again.

Just Not The Same

Our world is topsy-turvy, and things are changing faster than many of us can manage. School has changed…and changed again during this pandemic. We are dealing with things most of us never had to in the past, impacting our daily routines. We must wear masks and face shields, we use hand sanitizer every time we enter or leave a building, and we second guess every little sniffle or cough. Many in our school community have had to deal with changes in employment and now we have the added stress of wildfire smoke.

We really need a fixed point of reference for our lives to find our balance again.

Fixing Our Eyes

This year, our theme at ACS is taken from Hebrews 12:1-3. The idea of “fixing our eyes on Jesus,” is a great reminder of what we really need to do to find our way through all the challenges we are facing. Just like our grade 8s need to get up on deck and fix their eyes on the land to get over motion sickness while sailing, we all need to fix our eyes on our Saviour when our lives are turbulent and unsettled.

As the writer of Hebrews states, Jesus is the “author and perfecter of our faith.” He is the beginning and the fulfillment of our faith. It is for these reasons that we find our fixed point in him; he is the point that does not move or change and that gives us perspective on everything else. I know that I need constant reminders to look to Christ as there is so much else that is in motion.

We have had a good start to the school year—seeing students in our hallways and classrooms again is so good—and I know that this year is in His hands. No matter what else happens, I am reassured that He is our rock and He does not change.

May we all fix our eyes on him, this school year, and forever!