Those who tend fig trees like the prophet Amos have a humble vocation. When Amos is told to stop prophesying, he responds, “I’m no prophet. I’m a common herdsman, a sheep breeder. I pick sycamore figs.” In our humble positions as teachers, administrators, and learners, we are also fig-pickers, perhaps even fig-piercers if we break through the tough skin to allow maturity to come in our students. We don’t need a prophet label or wealth or great title to do our work well, to hear from God and obey Him in our everyday walk. But we do need to see our work as gardeners, those who tend, prune, and even burn. In John 15 it is because we remain in the vine that Christ calls us to love each other as He has loved us. In the same breath, Christ bids us to bear fruit that remains, fruit that regenerates much like the fig.

Christine Norvell

"With a Masters in Humanities from Faulkner University's Great Books program, Christine has taught high school English in classical and homeschool worlds for eighteen years, most recently for Regent Preparatory School in Tulsa, OK for the last eleven. She currently teaches American and World Literature online for high school students at Kepler Education. Christine is a senior contributor for The Imaginative Conservative and also regularly writes for websites like The Classical Thistle, Story Warren, Circe Institute, and University Bookman. She is the author of Till We Have Faces: A Reading Companion (2020). (I've been a classical education parent for 18 years and a classical literature teacher for 13 years. I speak at youth retreats, church conferences, chapels, and other academic conferences like The Classical Thistle's regional spring conference. I've presented both workshops and keynotes.)"