The Next Chapter Begins Today
Keys: “Now the LORD said unto Abram, ‘Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee…So Abram departed, as the LORD had spoken to him…” —Genesis 12.1,4
“In my distress I cried unto the LORD, and he heard me.” —Psalm 120.1
“I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber nor sleep.” —Psalm 121.1~3
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” —Matthew 11.28~30
“Behold, the hour cometh, yea, is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone: and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me. These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” —John 16.32~33
“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” —Ephesians 6.11~12
“We won’t be renewing your contract.” These six words and this short sentence spoken yesterday at 8:46AM ended the chapter of my life at Virginia Tech’s Language and Culture Institute (VTLCI or, simply, LCI). My contract ended on May 17th, 2013, which was last Friday. For some time leading up to the end of the Term and Semester, my future at VTLCI had been ambiguous. Yesterday at 8:46AM, I found out for certain.
Fired? Released? Canned? Let Go? Many may think — my wife certainly does — that I was fired. This isn’t really the truth. One must already have a confirmed and contracted job in order to be declared “fired”. To the reader of this treatise, I will simply let you be the judge. However, it is the opinion of this writer that I was not fired. As will be detailed later in this treatise, there are elements of this discussion with the administration that point towards me simply being let go of/released and not fired. However, once again, judgment will be left in the hands of the reader.
“We Don’t Want You Talking About Jesus Christ Anymore” In October of 2011, I was approached about being the coordinator of a group of Indonesian English Scholars who were scheduled to come to LCI for eight weeks of study. I agreed to this position. They came. We had a great time together. The Associate Director of LCI for Special Programs gave me, essentially, a carte blanche as far as activities were concerned and, so long as there was no proselytization involved, activities with my church were declared okay. My Pastor came and spoke to them in a Q-and-A session on religion, answered their questions, and took time to speak to them informally, as well. During Thanksgiving Break of 2011, we also went to a bonfire cookout, a bowling and billiards event, and, finally, a cultural exchange at my church. In none of these events was there any proselytization involved. The students, to a person, even said so later. We also went to a high school basketball game and went skating. It was during these vents and this time that someone, even now as yet unknown, complained to the Administration about my activities with the Indonesians. A week after they left, I was called into the office of the Director of LCI, with the Associate Director of LCI, in attendance. During this meeting — which turned out to be a dictation rather than any sort of discussion — I was told the sentence that serves as the header for this point. I was not to talk about Jesus Christ, even if asked by students. I’d had an earlier meeting with the Associate Director concerning a sign-up sheet for students who asked me twice about having a Bible Study, and was told by both that I was never to do this again. It was at this point…and possibly earlier (at the beginning of the Fall Semester of 2011, I had challenged them concerning the practice of changing contracts after they’d been signed. The Associate Director was not amused [and neither, to my hind-sighted knowledge, was the Director])…I believe that they had made the decision to find or try to find a way of getting rid of me from LCI.
The Small Shoe —– One of the things that I had experienced in Japan on three separate occasions is the practice of getting “The Small Shoe” — a practice where employers make the lives of selected employees indirectly excruciatingly difficult so that said employees will resign rather than employers having to undergo the ignominy of informing said employee(s) of their not being rehired or being fired. Twice I underwent this while teaching for Japan Christian Junior College and once more when teaching for American English Communication Services and Asahikawa Church of the Nazarene (yes, Christians also do The Small Shoe, unfortunately) during my time in Japan. Little did I know that Americans do The Small Shoe as well, as I found out starting in the Spring of 2012. It started with my salary being irregularly dispersed. Then my salary in the Summer was rescheduled in that I was shoved into a higher tax bracket AND there was no payment on September 1st because — in opposition to the Summer of 2011, when my salary was spread out over nine pay periods — my salary was spread out over eight pay periods. It was in the Summer of 2012, as well, that we were told that there would be a significant drop in the number of incoming LCI students. Because of this, three of our teachers were told that they were not going to be called back…including a very close and good brother. While no evidence exists, it is my belief that this drop in students was a manufacture precisely for the reason of getting rid of teachers that they did not like (I believe the same about these student complaints concerning my Grammar Teaching the administration told me about [very likely they concocted]……but we’ll get to that in a minute). Comments made by some of the administrators concerning all of these fine teachers that were overheard gives credence to this idea. In the Fall of 2012, I was informed that the administration was “concerned” because students had complained about my classes. They also expressed their “concern” because they said that my personal survey numbers — students are asked at the end of every turn to take a survey to determine their opinions and reactions to teachers and their classes — had dropped “significantly”. In the first term of the Spring Semester, I was given and assigned classes in the Annex. For the year prior, I had been in the Main Building of LCI, right in sight of the door of the Assistant Director for Curriculum Coordination and Level Leadership. Spring Term I of this year, I considered it a break and a time to be able to relax a bit when I was re-assigned to the Annex. I felt like the term went well that term, but there were rumblings of trouble I had no idea were afoot and were coming.
Student Complaints (Over Nothing) and “Supervision” —— I was asked to come into the Office of the Assistant Director for Academics at LCI on the last day of the term, Spring I 2013 after our end-of-term staff and faculty meeting. I thought, at the time, that my students in Grammar Class (the Assistant Director had informed me that this was going to be about my grammar class) were upset that we didn’t use the listening and speaking textbook very much that term (and not at all in three weeks). When the Assistant Director told me about my students complaining that my grammar instruction hadn’t been enough, my jaw hit the floor. We had spent three weeks in intensive Grammar Instruction. I was armed with evidence that my students in that class — nine out of the twelve, to be precise — had been regularly absent to the first hour of class. The Assistant Director pretty much blew that off by saying, “Every teacher has had that problem.” We then discussed my methods of teaching Grammar at one point, the Assistant Director stating, “Try not to make your classes be so much fun; try not to have so much fun in your classes.” At the end of the meeting, I walked out, went to my desk and found out, later that day, that I was being removed once again to the Main Building for Spring II. I went that day and moved all of my stuff to my former desk in the Main Building, and prepared for the new term. The Thursday before, I was called into the Associate Director’s office. I was there that Thursday to finish up grades and to tie up loose academic ends before the new term (Spring II) was to start. I went into the Associate Director’s Office where she asked me if I had told or had my students do their end of term evaluations. She said that the Assistant Director for Academics had sent out an e-mail in which she had included a reminder to do the evaluations after I said I didn’t know we were supposed to do them. Tersely, she said that it was part of my contract and work agreement that I needed to do these evaluations, especially in light of recent student complaints she had received (they’d apparently complained to the Assoc. Dir. as well as the Assistant Dir. for Academics). I asked if it would be alright if I had my students do them from home and made the request via e-mail, and she said that would be fine. Two days later, I received a formal reprimand via e-mail, and a week later had received the reprimand in my mailbox at LCI. The first week started and went rather well, to my knowledge, and I put all of this behind me. After the first staff meeting following the first week of classes, as I was walking by the Assistant Director for Academics’ office, she said, “Jason, students are complaining again!” Admittedly, this pretty much touched off a fuse. I had found out that week that my Mother’s eldest sister, Patricia (Aunt Pat), had passed away and that we — once again, for the who-knows-how-many time — wouldn’t be able to attend her memorial service. I was still — and still am — grieving over the loss of one of my best friends last September. I was still floored that students had complained about my Grammar Instruction. Stupidly, on the evening of March 29th, I vented……on Facebook. I wrote how things were going to be different. I wrote how a certain segment of society would find April Fool’s Day to never be the same. Some on Facebook took this the wrong way. The police were called. We were visited by two patrolmen from Blacksburg P.D. I called and talked to a VTPD Sergeant, and on April 1st had an interview in the afternoon with him. He and I both agreed that Facebook was (and is) a pretty stupid place to vent, and he offered to let me vent anytime I want with him. He then asked if I trusted the Associate Director (I had informed him of my upcoming meeting with her that he suggested I arrange) enough to have her pass on my true sentiments to the Director of LCI (who had been informed of the situation [and who had been at LCI on the morning of April 1st]). Stupidly, I said “Yes.” But whom else could I have talked with? I had that meeting later in the day with the Associate Director and the Business Manager (who is 2nd in authority to the Director). I mentioned to the Associate Director that what I’d posted on Facebook (and later removed per the suggestion of the officers of BPD) was merely my way of venting and that no harm was meant. The Associate Director then mentioned “Supervision” for the first time: I was to be under the “supervision” of the Assistant Director of Curriculum Coordination and Level Leadership (we’ll use the acronym ADCCLL), that I needed to have a plan ready to detail how I would be a “better” teacher in the coming Term. I then just happened to ask, when I was told I could speak freely, about the Final Grammar Exams: had anybody seen them, took time to look them over? The response was one of misdirection and subterfuge. ”Well, Jason, the Final Grammar Exams are just ONE way we evaluate students……” I don’t remember what else the Assoc. Dir,. said because I pretty much tuned the rest of what was said out. I realized then that this was no real “Supervision”, that this was no real “chance to get ‘better’”, that I was pretty much on my last days. After all, EVERY one of my students in the Grammar Class from Spring I passed their Final Grammar Exam (which is 20%~30% of their grade), and — despite the 9 of 12 being regularly absent — everyone had passed the course for the term (and to my knowledge at present, they all passed this term as well).
“Is THIS The Last ‘Hurrah!’?” This past term, I was observed by the ADCCLL on seven occasions and had five meetings with her in her office. None of what was said to me concerning my class management, teaching and instruction style, Q-and-A with students was positive. Yes, some good things were said, some good advice was given….but the meetings were generally negative. When the ADCCLL informed me towards the end of this term that she would be unable to observe any of my classes from then on, I inwardly cheered. Along with having the ADCCLL observe classes, I had to keep a professional journal, detailing what I’d done in class. I was required to read several books and chapters on how to be a better Grammar Teacher. And the Assoc. Dir. informed me that the Director wanted a meeting. At first, it was supposed to be the third week of the term, but that first meeting was canceled as the Director was going to be out of town. I did my best as a teacher this term, tried to “improve” and “be better” as they had required, but I found out that I was miserable and felt like teaching was no longer fun. Then, out of the blue, the LORD gave me a lesson to deliver in my Reading and Writing class. it was a classic lesson style that I’d done time and again, and as I was doing this lesson in class, I found out again how much I loved teaching. The rest of the term, I pretty much taught this way, doing my best to see to it that my students learned what they needed to learn. Whether or not I did a good job is up for judgment by others, but my students, again, in Grammar class passed their Final Grammar Exams (though, this term, one student scored below 70%; one of the students in class who had the highest number of absence hours scored the 2nd highest on the exam [88%]) and, again, everybody passed the class. Over the course of the remaining three weeks or so, after the Associate Director had sent out an e-mail asking for everybody’s availability for the Summer, there was speculation on my part as to whether or not I’d be teaching in the Summer. Several teachers, well-meaning in their suggestions, said I should approach the Associate Director about the Summer. Mrs. J. even mentioned dropping such a question as a hint or an off-hand question. I decided not to. They had placed me under Supervision this past term, so they could let me know themselves if I was to be asked to come back or not.
A Triple Team by The Top Three —– It was after the end of the Spring II Term and my contracted time that the Associate Director informed me via e-mail that the Director had requested a meeting for yesterday at 9AM. This came after an amazing weekend in which I had driven a courtesy van for Holiday Inn from Thursday night (5/16) to Saturday night (5/18). The people I had driven to and from the Inn and Downtown Blacksburg were most kind. The tips were nice, but more-so were the kindnesses they leveled upon me. One man told me how he was going to tell the management of Holiday Inn that I was “an asset” to the place; another family commented time and again how “Jason is awesome and our favorite guy!” So many great words; so many wonderful things they said. They had and probably have absolutely no idea what kind of salve for the wounds of this past academic year. Mrs. J. was quite happy with my time at Holiday Inn, as was I. Monday morning rolled around. I was pretty much exhausted from the activities of the weekend. I woke up with enough time to have a good breakfast and to have devotional time as usual. After breakfast, Jihye prayed for me, and then I prayed, too. I arrived at the Special Programs Building about 8:35 yesterday, sat and read the Word again, GOD giving me strength and assuring me of his presence there. A bit later, I walked in and sat on a bench, and, after opening my journal (I’ve started writing one again in order to help vent and get rid of some of the thoughts that plague me that aren’t so pleasant; for the most part, it has been a great, great help to my soul), saw the Associate Director come in and knock on the Director’s door. The Director opened the door for her and, seeing me sitting on the bench, asked me to come in. I’d left my car at 8:46AM. The Director ushered me in and, along with the Associate Director (whom I’d expected to be there) and the Business Manager (whom I DIDN’T expect to see there but wasn’t surprised to see at this meeting), sat down. The Director told me that I was to receive no new contract and that he was “disappointed” at how things had worked out and…well, he said that was all he had to say. I thanked them all for the opportunity they had given me to teach at LCI, praised the people I’d worked with and for, and thanked them for the good experience with such good students. The Director then ended the meeting by saying that I was welcome to refer to LCI in my future endeavors. I thanked him for that, stood up, shook the Associate Director’s hand, then the Business Manager’s, and finally the Director’s…and simply walked out of the Director’s Office and out of LCI. Before the Business Manager and the Associate Director could get back to the Main Building the LORD had spoken to me and had me go and clear out my personal effects from my desk, leaving LCI’s property there. After depositing all of this in my car, I went into the main office (where the Business Manager has his office) and spoke with the administrative assistants there. The first that I talked to, whose husband was the manager of Holiday Inn, asked me how it went. Clarifying, I asked, “You mean the weekend?” (I didn’t know if either of them knew about my meeting) with the Top Three) She said yes, and I told her that I’d done well and had a very good time. The second Administrative Assistant came by and asked why I was so dressed up on a vacation Monday. She kept praising how well I looked (anytime I go to meet with someone in high or higher authority where I have ever worked, I have always tried to dress up out of respect for the office of the person calling the meeting; Dad had taught me this simple principle long ago, and I’ve striven to follow it ever since) before I could say anything, really, I raised my work keys and told the first that I needed to turn them in. She looked at me and asked, “Why?” I told her, simply, “My contract wasn’t renewed.” The second administrative assistant said “Now, you’re going to make me cry!” The first, still looking surprised, said “Did they tell you why?” I said that I didn’t ask. She came around her desk to give me a hug and called the second over for a group hug. They both told me to keep in touch and to not be a stranger when I left. The first later called — still crying — saying that her husband was going to try and arrange a position for me at Holiday Inn. I asked if I should go in then, but she said it wasn’t a good time but asked if I had her and her husband’s numbers. I said that I did and thanked her. Something I’ve noticed since coming to LCI……since leaving the gridiron nearly twenty years ago, really: sometimes you never really stop playing your position. I played Defensive Line for four of the five years I played at MidAmerica Nazarene; I played Offensive Line for most of my high school and junior high career. I played O. and D. line in the three alumni games at MNU I had the privilege of being a part of. For anyone not familiar with American Football, Offensive and Defensive Line aren’t the positions that make all the headlines in the sports pages, unless a Tackle scoops up a fumble and rumbles for a touchdown, or a Defensive End happens on the off chance to intercept a pass. The main duty of the D. and O. Line is to take on the opposing linemen across from them, and keep them off of the Quarterback and Running backs (for O-Line) and the Linebackers and Defensive Backs (for D-Line). The D-line is supposed to plug gaps, blast holes in the O-Line, and basically be troublemakers up on the Defensive Front; O-Line is supposed to run in front of the running backs and quarterbacks and keep defenders off of them so that they can score a touchdown. Ever since I’ve left MNU, the LORD has shown me that I’m still playing D-Line. Yesterday, I took on a triple team from LCI’s top three. My D-Line coaches in both High School and College both told my teammates and me that being double teamed by the offense is a badge of honor: it means that we’re causing too much trouble for just one O-Lineman or Fullback to handle and that when such happens, there’s an opening for another defender somewhere. If they have to put two defenders in a gap, it means that the O-Lineman in that gap is doing a great job, and that with a defensive double team, again, someone is open to score a touchdown…or at least get a first down. It took three of them to tell me that I didn’t have a job in the Summer. In fact, it wasn’t just any three, but the top three administrators directly in authority and “control” of LCI: The Director, the Business Manager, and the Associate Director. Though being informed that no contract is available was hard to take — and still is hard to take — the fact that it took the top three to be there to let me go is an honor. While they’re focusing on little, old, insignificant me, someone is about to score on them, and score big time.
“Son, Never Get Yourself Into a Position Where You Can’t Look Someone In The Eye.” My Dad taught me this, also. He taught my brother and me…and anyone else who would happen to listen…to live life in such a way that we would never have to divert our eyes from the person or people we were talking to. Always live in such a way that we can look the person we’re talking to in the eye. That was one of the ways Dad always knew when I was lying to him (two of the worst spankings I ever received were for lying to my Dad……something that I remember to this day). He always gave me a second chance to tell him the truth, and I usually did when given that second chance. Ever since my younger days, I’ve striven to live in such a way that I can look anyone in the eye. Have I been perfect at this? No, but since my childhood, I’ve always worked and striven and tried to live in such a way. Yesterday, when I was in the meeting with The Top Three, I happened to glance around at the Business Manager and the Associate Director. Their eyes were downcast, unpleasant looks on their faces. The Director looked me in the eye only once while he was talking, and then fleetingly. As I shook their hands and thanked them, nobody looked me in the eye. That, in and of and by itself, spoke volumes. I remember a quote my Dad and Granddad both told me on separate occasions…
“Son, when a man won’t look you in the eye when you’re talkin’ to him, it means he’s hidin’ somethin’. When he won’t look you in the eye when you’re shakin’ his hand, it means his handshake ain’t worth a dime…”
It’s something I’ve tried to follow and remember ever since……and it was something that was glaringly blatant and obviously clear yesterday morning. Dad and Granddad were right again…
“Why Didn’t You Ask ‘Why?’” I’ve talked to different members of my family and my circle since this happened. My Mom asked me the question that is in this header. When the Director was speaking, I knew anything I would ask concerning the reason for my not being offered a contract wouldn’t receive a truthful answer. I am fully convinced that every one of the members of the Administration of LCI…and who knows, really, how high it goes?…is false. They couldn’t say I didn’t do my job, because I did: my students passed the exams, passed the classes I taught, and several have gone on to Tech or other universities. They couldn’t say that there weren’t enough students, because several other teachers informed me that there is such a shortage of teachers for the Summer that the Associate Director, the Assistant Director for Academics, and the ADCCLL will all have to teach classes. Further, they have begged other teachers who ARE teaching in the Summer, but just one side, to teach both and an elective. Even further, one of the Chinese-American teachers they released last Fall they begged to come and teach again (she declined). They can’t say that I ever came too late or left too early: I usually was the first one in the Main Building and also generally stayed until 3pm or later. They can’t really bring up the “failure” to have my students do their evaluations “on time” because several other teachers told me directly that they had done the same thing as I did (had the students do them at home and send them in via e-mail). They can’t say I was abusive to my students, physically dangerous, or out of control because I never was. They can’t even use the Facebook Vent that I posted that had caused so much fear because the investigating officer stated himself that he believed every word I’d told him and saw no further need for surveillance or investigation. The only thing that they can really say is that students complained and that I’d received a reprimand……but even then, I have counter evidence to shut down such complaints (my students passed [as stated before], and, legally, students aren’t supposed to do teacher evaluation with the teacher in question present with them). What could they say, the Top Three, yesterday? What I mean is: what could they say that was the REAL and TRUE reason for me not being given a new contract for the Summer? As such, why bother asking? Perhaps the Director figured I’d fight the decision, which may be why the Business Manager and Associate director were there? Perhaps he was going to have either of them say this or that if I’d challenged the decision? Whatever the case, the LORD simply let me know in that short meeting that I just needed to say “Thank you!” and walk……and that’s what I did. No need to ask why because whatever they’d've said would’ve been suspect. Just walk. Shake their hands and look them in the eye, thank them, open the door, and walk away. Just. Walk. Away…
“Fellahs, Leave It All On the Field!” Another football analogy comes to mind, the one that is the header for this point, and a quote I first heard from my late Head Football Coach at Jessamine County High School, Coach Frank Conyers: leave it all on the field. Coach Conyers would tell us this before every game. ”Leave it on the field, fellahs.” Coach John Griggs, my defensive Coach and Coach Paul Roher, my offense and later D-line Coach in high school echoed Coach Conyers’ words: ”Men, leave it on the field!” Coach Gordon DeGraffenreid and later Coach Mike Redwine and the rest of my positional coaches stated the same in college: ”Leave it all on the field!” What did and does this mean? It means to give everything you’ve got, to go as hard as you can, and to do your absolute best. Win or lose, leave everything on the field. My coach in high school, who was the one coach that was there all five years I played, Coach Glenn Hill, would often ask in practice, “What are you saving it for?” Leave it all on the field…even the practice field, because what you do in practice is what you’ll do in the game. I can honestly say that I’ve left it all “on the field” at LCI. For those of my coworkers and my students who happen to read this, if there was a time or times in my tenure at LCI that I didn’t leave it all there…where I DIDN’T do my best…please fill me in. Seriously, feel free. I tried my best to teach my students, did my best to be there and be in class on time, tried my best to help my students learn, and strove every day to be the best ESL/EFL Instructor I can be. As I look back, I can say, in echo to my coaches, “I left it all there.” I have no regrets about my time at LCI, have nothing but good and great and wonderful thoughts and words for my coworkers and students, and have naught but cordiality and friendliness to LCI’s Administration. It’s all there. Everything I had to give, every day I was asked to give it, is all there. As I walk away from LCI, there is nothing to be ashamed of. I did my best. Even though the Administration thinks it wasn’t good enough, I am not ashamed to say that I did my best. And I am grateful for the opportunity to teach with some of the best educators in the world, to teach some of the best students anywhere, and to work under some good administrators. Thank you, LCI, for the chance, for the time. I did my best. It’s all there.
D-Day Plus One —– In the day that has passed since I was let go from LCI, people have been most gracious and wonderful. Mom and Dad both called and let us know that we have their support. I talked with our pastor last night and plan to meet with him later this week……maybe Friday or Thursday……to talk about everything. I called my brother but didn’t get a hold of him (they’re moving to North Dakota). I plan to call him again this evening after Gideon’s Camp Meeting. The rest of the day yesterday was one of great conversation with my Lady Reina Jihye. She asked if we planned to move. Mom asked if we were coming to Kansas to teach (she told me on the phone that she wanted us home, but that she also wants GOD’s will [that's what we want, as well]). Right now, I don’t feel any leading of the LORD God to move. We have some teaching opportunities in the area, and if these fall through, well then GOD has something else. I took the Virginia Communication and Literacy Assessment last Saturday and I think I did okay. It wasn’t as difficult as I thought it’d be, but we’ll see how it was when I get my scores. I’m scheduled to take the Praxis II for English next month (June 8th) and for Social Studies in July (7/27). Sometime around then, I plan to submit my application for State License for Teaching. I’m going to try to go the experiential alternative route, and have contacted Korakuen and Sakamot0-sensei about letters concerning my time with them and they’ve graciously sent them. This week, I plan to rest and relax. Probably after Memorial Day, I’ll be hitting the pavement to look for something in the Summer. God is Good…
The Bottom Line —– It’s Been a Good Ride! Anytime I enter a situation or an employment opportunity, and the administrators DON’T kill off this love of teaching that I have, I consider it a success. Anytime I go into a course and class and the students don’t drive this love of teaching outta’ me, I consider that a win. Whenever I go into a job and look back with pleasant memories, especially if it all ends well……and my time at LCI ended well, let’s not mince words about that. It cold have gotten ugly, it could have become nasty, and it could have dropped to a level that was combative and angry……I fully believe that is why the Business manager and the Associate Director were there. The fact that GOD was in control of this thing, and he encouraged me to just walk away and thank them in the process, is testament that He helped this thing end well for my part……and it did end well. As I stated above, I left it all on the field. I came to school every day and determined to do my best. I gave it my all (and that’s really easy to do when you love what you’re doing [and let there be no doubt: I LOVE TEACHING!!!!!!!]) and I can walk away with my head held high…which is just what I will do! I had a great, wonderful, awesome time at LCI, and I will always be thankful to have been given a fine opportunity like this to teach at a school like Virginia Tech. No Regrets; I have absolutely No Regrets! Praise the LORD, I Have No Regrets!
Conclusion —– What’s next? As far as this goes, I have no idea. As I stated above, I’ll take it easy this week. Monday’s Memorial Day, so likely nobody’ll make any decisions about new hires until likely after that date. I’ll be pounding the pavement looking on the 28th and will keep doing so until I get a Summer Job. As I’ve prayed about something else to do, the LORD has simply told me to wait upon him and see his glory. A verse of Scripture comes to mind……
“And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.” —Luke 24.49
“It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” —Acts 1.7~8
So this is what I’ll do: I’ll wait upon the LORD……
“Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” —Isaiah 40.28~31
He has promised to take care of us, and I know he will……
“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore.” —Psalm 37.23~27
I don’t consider myself righteous or good, but GOD is good, and I gave my heart and life to him so many years ago. He has never failed and never left me alone. Praise his name because he will take care of us. We must simply wait upon him………and we will!
Prayer —– Thank you, Father, for my time at LCI. Bless all of those in authority, all of the teachers, and all of the students. May they all come to know you as Savior and LORD of their lives! Bless Dyanis and Katia, Caitlin and Kama, Mackenzie and Ben, Cristina and Lois. Bless Maggy and her family and Ada and her family. Bless Vanessa and her children. Bless Pinar and Donita and Linda and Jeff and Melissa and Vonna. Bless my coworkers, Father, would you please? Thank you for the Peace that you give and have given! Thank you, LORD. I pray this is n the Strong Name of Jesus, Amen.
Verse to Remember:
“Trust in the Lord, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed. Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.”
—Jason Lovelace, End Times Commentary