I love my calling! As a Lutheran school teacher, I get to teach my students about Jesus. I helped to build their knowledge of the world He created. I actually enjoyed teaching during this 2020–2021 school year. My class had fun as “Roomies” and “Zoomies,” and I loved being able to help nurture my nieces every day. I was soaking in each moment of the chapter I was living, so when I received an opportunity to consider a Call, it took me by surprise.
During the call process, I quickly realized I had many reasons to stay and just as many reasons to go. I received a lot of advice and spiritual reminders. The one that kept circling in my head was Deuteronomy 31:8. “It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.” Just as God went before and was with Joshua and the Israelites, I trusted that God would go before me and would be with me, just as He promised. This gave me the confidence to take the leap of faith.
Once I accepted the Call to St. Luke’s, someone asked why I wanted to “start over.” I was taken back at first, wondering if I was expected to share a bad experience, but I didn’t have one to share. In fact, I didn’t want to completely “start over.” I value what I’ve learned and I want to build on it, not start from scratch! Instead of seeing my new role as a way to “start over,” I reframe it in my head as a “new chapter.”
When I walked into my classroom the walls were blank, just like a blank page. The page, however, won’t be blank for long. I have new ideas, my coworkers have ideas that are new to me, and we’ll be able to collaborate and complement each other’s skills and personalities. I don’t know what this next chapter holds for me, but I know Who’s writing it!
No matter if you’re starting this coming school year in a new role, at a new school, teaching for the first time, or are in the same grade and subject you’re used to, this approaching school year gives us all a new chapter to our story.
Consider your goals for this year when planning for this chapter.
- Leave room for margins. Prioritize time for devotions, reflection, and rejuvenation.
- Listen and learn. Allow being around new teachers in a new school to give you new perspectives and ideas.
- Be bold. Introduce your coworkers to ideas you have, especially if you’ve had success with them.
I like having go-to-phrases that remind me of my values as I live out my vocation. I encourage you to adopt a verse, phrase, or word that reminds you of your goals for this new school year.