Perception vs. Reality
Perception vs. Reality
Piccolo Lessons, January, 2023

Welcome members and colleagues of Christian Educators to the 2023 school year! 

Our wish and desire is for you to have the most beneficial and satisfying semester you have ever experienced in your educational career. My goal in this edition of Piccolo Lessons is to share one of our member’s stories and show how their situation may speak to your circumstances. 

Recently, I consulted with one of our members who was struggling with perception vs. reality.   Of course we know that our perceptions are not always true. She was being perceived by colleagues as a dogmatic leader, who had no regard for others emotions or feelings. This was obviously not who she was, but because of the challenging task assigned to her of transforming the image of a school, she was given this label. After much conversation and dialogue I was able to join her in a meeting with district representatives and really help get to the core of the issue. The dynamic in question was a powerful five-letter word: trust. Trust, as we know, is a two-way street. It must sincerely manifest itself equally from both sides of the situation in order to be able to confront problems and ultimately begin the healing process. Through a lot of conversation and prayer I believe she and the district are on the way to a much clearer understanding of the situation, and most importantly, each other. I was honored to assist her to find peace and trust as she moves forward.

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you were misunderstood or inappropriately criticized at your school? I would suggest taking some or all the following steps:

  • Forgive those who are speaking against you, releasing them to Jesus. Remember that He calls us to love our enemies (Matthew 18:21-22, Matthew 5:44). 
  • Go in-person to those criticizing you. Use phrases like “help me understand” to gain their perspective and apologize for any shortcoming on your part. If appropriate, validate their feelings and concerns  (Matthew 5:23-24).
  • Gently explain your perspective and reasons for your actions and seek reconciliation, bringing in other trusted voices if necessary (Matthew 18:15-17).

This member’s story is just another example of how God continues to work through Christian Educators. Through the overflow of prayer and sincere respect for each of our members the Lord is paving new roads of communication, trust, and sincere relationships. Proverbs 3:5-6 tells us to, Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will make your paths straight. Are you placing all your trust in Him? Maybe with the onset of this new year you can pray and spend more time with the Lord to strengthen both your walk and your level of trust.

The beautiful part of this very important word “trust” we have been talking about today is that as a member of CE you are part of a trustworthy organization that has a heart to look out for your best interests. It is exemplified on a daily basis by the fine work at our headquarters, led by our awesome team of Jere, Michael Ann, and Lauren, who understand your concerns and are the initial sounding board in many situations.

In conclusion, please know that in 2023 and beyond we are here for you. As clearly stated in Galatians 6, we bear your burdens. We take them to the throne of the Almighty and corporately pray for your plight and ask for God’s intervention to lead the way! Oh what a beautiful anchor we have in Jesus. May we always place our trust in Him!

To God be all the glory!
David M. Piccolo

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