CHANGING ROLES

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17, NIV

We all know that some things never change. But that is rarely true for those of us who work in education. It’s not uncommon for us to get reassigned to different grades or have duties added to our positions, maybe with little or no input from us. And how we respond is often dependent on our feelings about the change.

In the Old Testament, the Levites were appointed to serve the Lord in a variety of ways. Some of the families had been serving in the same roles for over 400 years. They were probably experts in efficiency and excellence in those roles. But some of their roles became obsolete when the temple was built. There was no longer a need for some of the Levites to carry the Tabernacle or its furnishings. So instead of being entirely displaced, they were reassigned to new roles. They had new responsibilities, and no one asked them how they felt about it.

As our school has grown and changed, so has my role. First, I went from part-time to full-time by adding elementary art classes to my jr. high history schedule. Then I dropped part of the art classes to teach remedial 8th-grade algebra and then dropped both algebra and art to add high school history. That was all fine. But the hardest transition was letting go of those jr. high history classes I had taught for so long. I had poured my heart into developing the curriculum. And one by one, as our school has grown, they were handed off to other teachers so I could take on the more challenging high school courses. No one consulted with me about it; I was simply informed of the change. I love my new role, but it has been bittersweet to let go of all my previous work. My younger self might have grumbled or tried to micro-manage the new teacher. Fortunately, God gave me the ability to hand the curriculum off gracefully. And I was able to give thanks for the opportunity to develop new material and rejoice that some of my previous students are back in my classroom.

Regardless of how we feel about change, God tells us that our attitude should be one of thankfulness. We need to remember who we really work for. We can thank Him for the opportunity to serve Him and we can do whatever it is to give Him glory.

Lord, you know our hearts and our tendency to get too comfortable in the roles we fill. Help us to face new challenges with curiosity, courage, and contentment. Help us to do everything with a thankful heart for Your glory. Amen.

Copyright Diana Anderson.

Diana is a member who teaches history and art to secondary students at a Christian school in Kennewick, WA.

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4 Responses

  1. This hit home! I had been in the same school for 17 years. Not always in exactly the same position but always in charge of the library. This year I was moved to a new position, new building. It was and still is scary for this 62 yo. But as my husband said “God is watching out for you.” My old school has a new principal and from what I hear, everyone is just trying to keep their heads down and hope for a change at the end of the year or find a new job. The job I have now is WAY less stressful. I almost feel like I’m stealing. HE puts us where we need to be if we’ll just listen.

  2. Wonderful reminder of who we work for. I can accept things much easier when I know they are coming from the Lotd

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