The Story of The Past Few Weeks

So according to my “blog schedule”, today’s post is supposed to be a big, happy end-of-month post. But that’s not what I’m going to blog about today. I will blog about that sometime later this week. (Probably.) 

Today I am going to blog about how I ended up as next year’s first grade teacher at CCS. 

It’s a long, detailed story, you see. And I always feel bad for people when they so innocently ask me about it… if teaching is something I’ve been interested in doing for awhile. They have no idea what kind of answer they are about to get. And I do my best to abbreviate the story, but then I end up leaving out details, and it’s just confusing, because parts of the story are missing! So today, I am here to tell the whole story. From the beginning to the end. Well, not from the beginning, because that would mean going back to the beginning of me. And not to the end because, well… I don’t know what the end will be. 

But we’re going to start with me working at Hillcrest. 

Hillcrest has been a really great job for me. It has been pretty much perfect… three days a week (I guess that now it’s turned into four days a week), withing walking/biking distance, and awesome funny people to work with. I really do believe that God sent me my job there. I remember praying and asking God what I should do, and being like, “Okay, God… I’m going to trust that the next opportunity that comes my way is from you, and I’m going to take it.” And Hillcrest came my way within several days. So I believe that God gave me that job. BUT I don’t think He wanted me to stay there forever. Which is great, because as much fun as I have there, I don’t actually want to spend the rest of my life working there. 

After Christmas was when I seriously started to feel restless, and like it was maybe time for me to be doing something else. I just didn’t know what. So I started thinking about going back to school…. I thought about that a lot. I looked into lots of different stuff, and considered many things, but couldn’t really figure anything out. I couldn’t even decide if I wanted to be in school again, much less decide on a career. So I took my indecision as a sign that it maybe wasn’t the time for more school just yet. I felt better once I decided that I wasn’t going to go back to school yet, but I still hadn’t really solved my problem. 

And then I just didn’t think about it for a few weeks. Cause ignoring stuff is a really mature way to handle things, right? 😉 But the feeling that I was supposed to be doing something besides baking bread at Hillcrest wasn’t really going away. So I decided that it was time to start taking some steps, even if it just meant making short-term plans. That was when I decided to apply to SMBI’s WATER program. 

I did apply, and I told my boss at Hillcrest that I would be quitting in June, which felt kind of scary, because it would mean coming home after being gone for most of the summer and not having a nice, secure job waiting for me. And it would mean starting a new job… and Hillcrest had become so nice and…. comfy. I had started to feel like I was actually doing a good job of working there, and the thought of starting all over again with a new job was just kind of scary. But I reallyreally felt like it was what I was supposed to do. So I decided that I was going to trust God and go for it. 

Soon after I had applied for WATER, the idea of teaching was mentioned to me by a friend. 😉 And afterwards, I went home and thought, “I would never ever be a teacher. I could not even do that.” Teaching was not something I had ever even thought about doing before, and definitely not something I felt qualified to do. But then I realized that my reaction to it had been all wrong. Someone who had just decided to trust God shouldn’t be so quick to dismiss new ideas, right? So I prayed and said, “God… I really do want to do what you have for me to do. Even if it’s something really scary. Send me whatever you have for me or guide me whatever direction you want me to go.” And then I thought, “Wow. It’s really good that teaching was suggested to me, or else I might have never realized that I should be open to doing whatever God wants me to, even if it’s something I’ve never considered before. That suggestion was a really good prompter!” 

So I felt pretty good about my decision to trust God for the next few days. 

And then I found out that CCS still needed a grade one teacher. And Meg was like, “You could pursue it!” And I was like “What is up with this teaching thing??? Why won’t it go awaaaaaaay???? I don’t want to teach!” and so I decided that I would not pursue it, even thought it kind of would have worked really good with my summer plans, and let’s face it, working with Meg would be kind of awesome, and I really like teaching Sunday School, and I love kids, and CCS holds a special place in my heart…. yeah. It was then that I realized that I was slowly warming up to the idea of teaching. But there was still way too much about it that scared me. So. I decided not to do anything about it, but if I got asked by the school to do it, then I would have to consider it more seriously. 

And then nothing happened for like, two days. 

Well, I went to Target in Guelph. But that is completely unrelated to this story. 

Except that when I got home from Target, there was an email from Mr. Lichty waiting for me, saying that I was going to be getting a phone call asking if I would consider teaching grade one next year. 

So basically, I freaked out. =) 

And then I was like “Seriously??? Really??? God, why would you want me to do something that I’m very possibly going to be terrible at???? Why?? IT MAKES NO SENSE.” But then I calmed down and seriously started thinking about this. Logically. From all angles. I think I thought every single thought that could possibly be thought on this topic. I thought about learning to use the photocopier at school (that thing has always scared me!). I thought about my weaknesses. I thought about my strengths. I thought about decorating bulletin boards and coming up with Christmas programs and disciplining children and noon hour games and teaching kids to read and doing art and helping them all get their outdoor clothes on in the winter and tying skates and helping them skate and telling them Bible stories in the mornings and staff meetings. I thought about things I wouldn’t like about the job. But the list of things that I would love was longer. 

I realized that there was really only one reason that I would turn down this opportunity. And that was that I really did not feel qualified. I didn’t have a clue how to be a teacher (still don’t!) and the thought of learning was (is) scary. But then I started thinking about all the people in the Bible that were given a job by God. And I seriously doubt that any of them felt qualified for what He gave them to do. Like Gideon. And Esther. And Moses. And David. And Mary. The list goes on and on. It really does. I actually did make a list. And I have developed a theory. It is this: I don’t think that God asks his people to do easy things. Like ever. I mean, can you think of anyone- any Christian who has done amazing things for God- who was given an easy job? Do you think God ever presents a task to anyone by saying, “So… I have this job for you to do. No, no, no. Don’t get all worried! It’ll be easy! You won’t have to step outside your comfort zone at all. You won’t be challenged. You won’t make mistakes. You won’t learn or grow or change at all.” That’s not how God works. So I concluded that being scared of teaching was not actually a legit reason to not do it. But then there was still kind of this question in my mind of whyLike why is it that God doesn’t ask his people to do easy things? But I have decided that it is because there really are some things that we can’t do on our own. Things that we would fail miserably at if we tried to do them on our own. But with God? Nothing is impossible. Absolutely nothing. So our weaknesses are a way for God to accomplish what He wants to, using us. We just have to trust that He will. See, we shouldn’t limit God to what we are able to do. We have access to the most incredible source of power… the most powerful force in the world. In the universe. Except that God is so powerful that he created the universe. So even saying that he’s the most powerful being in the universe does not accurately portray how powerful he actually is. And we have all of that inside and around us. Doesn’t it kind of make you feel all tingly? =) So the long and short of it is… God isn’t limited by what you can do. You are limited to what God can do. Which is anything. So yeah. That makes you pretty powerful. And it also means that we don’t ever really get to take credit for what we do. Because it wasn’t actually us. I could go on about this for a long time, because it’s one of those things that I’m having trouble putting into words. Those kinds of things are so annoying, and yet so awesome, because usually if it’s hard to capture an idea in words, it means that it’s just too awesome and too big of a concept to be limited by words. So you just kind of try, and hope that people can kind of understand what you are trying to say. Ooh! Kind of like in Inception! Where the most basic part of an idea is planted in someone’s mind, and their mind takes that tiny, simple beginning, and goes with it, and it becomes their very own idea. Okay. Now I have gotten distracted. All that to say that I pretty much decided that I was going to say yes. 

But the phone call didn’t come that night. 

Or the next night. 

And so I basically had a heart attack every time the phone rang. 

But then the phone call finally came. And at that point, I was starting to feel a bit uncertain again, and so I was like, “Well, do I need to give an answer right now?” And I didn’t have to, but I realized very quickly that that was stupid, because I did actually know that I was going to tell them that I would be happy to teach grade one. So I called back the next day and said “Yes.” =) Then I had to wait for an email telling me when I would be interviewed. And while I was waiting, I started seriously thinking about my summer plans, because I was kind of thinking I should maybe be going to Faith Builders instead of WATER, considering the fact that I know next to nothing about teaching. But I had been getting all excited about WATER. So that was another decision that was on my mind. Until, of course, I got a call from SMBI saying that I had been accepted for the program, but all of the places I had applied to were already full. So that seemed like a pretty definite answer to that question, and kind of also cemented in my mind that this was what God wanted me to do. Because He was doing a pretty good job of clearing the path for me. 

And so on Friday afternoon, I had an interview, and I have the job, and I’m going to apply to Faith Builders for the summer term and teacher’s week, and I’m going to try to keep from freaking out about how much I do not know about this and just focus on learning as much as I can and trusting in God’s power and being the best teacher that I can be. I am excited. =) And scared. And a little bit sad that after this spring, I won’t get to wear my pink apron on such a regular basis. It was such fun to wear a pink apron. And I will miss Florence. And Amber. And everyone else too. And I will miss eating freshly fried and glazed donuts for breakfast. Although I will save $1.10 by not eating those two donuts every week. Seriously… if you want a donut and are driving through Floradale between 8 and 9 in the morning…stop at Hillcrest and I will buy you one. Because you are worth 55 cents to me. =) Also because donuts that are that fresh are just one of the greatest things ever, and everyone deserves to have one! =) 

But back to the whole teaching thing… I was kind of surprised by how quickly I made my decision about teaching. Normally I am bad with decisions. But I think I am better at making the big ones rather than the small ones (cause seriously… if you would ask me right now if I want to go to Smoking Tony’s or Bourbon Street Grill for supper, I would not even know what to say. The good news is that I am staying home and eating leftover spaghetti instead). The problem came after my interview when I realized that I had the job and that I really WAS actually going to be a teacher. That was when the problem came. Saturday was bad. Sunday was worse. Sunday resulted in me crying while watching the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, which are NOT worth crying over. Really. But today? Today is goooooooooood. And I feel excited again. Because I realized that I shouldn’t stop trusting in God just because I have this job now. I trusted Him to provide one, and He did (He did it really quickly too! =)). I don’t get to start depending on myself now. I don’t know why I would want to, but it seems to be my natural tendency. I think it may be cause I’m like, a human. But I trusted Him before, and now I need to trust Him to help me do the job He sent me. 

I feel like I am learning so much. =)

But also like there is much left to learn. 

So yeah… that is where the story ends for now, I suppose! 

And they all lived happily ever after…. 

6 thoughts on “The Story of The Past Few Weeks

  1. I read this post and it was so good it made me feel like crying. You probably need to understand me to understand that incongruity, but anyway…I became a teacher once too, and did not know that I would be smitten for life. Blessings on you!

  2. Oh I love this post Jas! Congratulations on your new job! I have 110% confidence that you will make an awesome teacher, even if you don’t feel that way, I can see it! lol Also, thank you, because this post said some things that I needed to hear right now.

  3. Because Valerie referenced this post in her comment, I came back and read it. It was definitely worth the read! So good to read how God is working in your life. 🙂

  4. Okay, I know this post is years old, but I have to let you know I love it. It echoes so much of what God has been teaching me recently, putting it beautifully into words. I shivered, reading your words. This could have been me, in different times of life already. What a marvel, the way God leads us ever on, into new spheres where we are enabled to see life differently and grow thereby. And mostly, how we are given an ever-expanding picture of God Himself.

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