Fresh Perspective

I’m going to start with a mini rant/explanation. You’re welcome to skip to the last paragraph for the point of this post.

talk about overloaded!

Yesterday (since I fell asleep before posting my daily reflection) I had the chance to return to ICS, my former workplace, and interview some students. The goal was to interview students on camera in order to edit the clips and present them in a future school chapel. The teachers and I discussed some of the focus questions in advance, but we didn’t discuss the number of students I was to interview. The ICS teachers amassed a whopping 13 middle school students. This may not seem like a lot, but when each interview is about 10 minutes long, that comes to over 2 hours of film that needs to be edited down to a 10-15 minute video to fit within a 20 minute chapel talk. Whoa. Overload.

Anyway, the point of this post is that by stepping out of my role as a teacher and into the role of youth minister, I’ve gained a much larger perspective on working with kids. I have a newfound appreciation for the work that youth pastors do, and if I return to teaching, I’ll be much more careful about the tasks that I ask a youth pastor to help me with.

A Giant Sigh of Relief

Jumpphoto © 2011 Hamad AL-Mohannna | more info (via: Wylio)
Finally, after six months of searching, I now have a job for the upcoming school year.

Ironically, in spite of a dozen applications to schools in Hong Kong, I won’t actually be teaching. This was a situation where the job kind of fell into my lap.

Here’s a brief backstory for the new reader: In November of 2010, I decided there was something new in store for me after completing school year. Many thought this was strange because teaching at ICS is a stable job, the students are among the best, and my reputation is quite stellar. What more could a person ask for?

The reasons for leaving are a bit etherial, but here’s what I know: I feel like I’ve been a little stagnant. When you’re stuck, you just need to move. Also, I think it’s healthy for teachers to take a break from time to time. A person needs outside experiences to bring into the classroom. It keeps teachers fresh, relevant, and interesting.

smile!photo © 2006 Sean Jackson | more info (via: Wylio)
Furthermore, as a Christian, I’ve spent time in prayer. The answer (though not audible) I kept getting back was that there was something different from ICS and that I needed to take a step out in faith. I’ve done that, and now I know that it was right.

Next year, I’ll be the assistant youth director at Island ECC. I’ll be working alongside Marcus Kroese and Amanda Fung, and we’ll be building relationships with kids all over Hong Kong. More specifically, I get to work with the middle school age children. I’m really looking forward to a vibrant, high-energy profession and ministry.

As a final note, I want to thank all the people that have stood by me along the way. Thank you to those that prayed for me, encouraged me, and reminded me that something great would come along.

Just Give Up

Everywhere but here?photo © 2009 will ockenden | more info (via: Wylio)
Sometimes the best thing a person can do is to simply give up.
Sometimes we want something so bad that we miss the bigger picture.

I’m not depressed, and I’m not giving up on life or anything.
Rather, sometimes I simply need to let go and let God rule my life rather than myself.

But there’s a tricky balance to maintain too.
I need to be active and living life fully, but I also need to realize that, “The best laid plans of mice and men, oft go awry” (Robert Burns).

hopephoto © 2006 pol sifter | more info (via: Wylio)
2 quotes that are helping me through this shaky time in my life:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” (Jim Elliot)