It has been my joy to hear the story of Dianne Goble and help her understand the calling which so powerfully animates her. Hers is a real redemption story. Dave Rodriguez
Did you ever think your job was your calling? I did until just recently. I’ve been an educator for 35 years, 33 of which have been in special education. Having grown up with a mom who was a special education student, I have been able to easily relate to the kids that I worked with because it all felt so natural to me.
I have loved my kids dearly and truly wanted them to live life to the fullest. I have always wanted them to be protected from danger and to develop a healthy outlook on how they could live in a world that is sometimes cruel to them.
I have been intentional about finding ways that they can take in academics, but as I have watched them struggle, I have always known there was so much more that they needed than math and reading.
As I recently spent time with Dave Rodriguez, I realized that my job definitely intersects my calling, but it is not my calling! My calling is to love beyond the ordinary, those with wounds that are still bleeding. My unique design senses danger and confronts injustice with a velvet hammer. Well, I may still be working on the velvet part.
My calling has come out of living in neglect and abuse growing up, and the abuse was then carried into my adult life by someone who posed as a “Christian Counselor.” I ended up in a cult that took my money and made me a slave. God graciously pulled me away and set me on a new path. Because of His extraordinary intervention, I am compelled to reach out in a way that is beyond the ordinary to anyone who has been injured in life. If I observe an injustice, I desire to do everything I can to stop it.
In teaching, my calling only intersects my job because academics have requirements and are tightly monitored. The whole person is often ignored because education is so data driven. Being a 4 with a 3 wing on the Enneagram, this makes me crazy and causes me to feel so frustrated that the intuitive side of me is not even considered. I know when a kid needs help on many levels. I enjoy the academics, but am not always able to give what they need and deserve, which is the gift of my time and a listening ear.
This season in my life has been preparing me for this new awareness. I have been seeing students who are now adults, and interacting with them on a different level. We gladly received two new members into our small group who are physically challenged. People have been confirming my intuitiveness, while others in my job setting have criticized it. I walked away from a long time friendship because I was obliterated by this criticism. I have been able to form a friendship with the disabled daughter of a high school friend. I’ve begun to take the time to brush the hair of a 6 year old who deals with neglect. I’ve befriended a grandma who has cancer and is so afraid that her grandchildren are going to end up back with their addicted dad.
I don’t know yet where this will take me as I look into retirement in a few years. I am still processing. I so look forward to the time when I can fully live out my calling. Until then, I will continue to pursue what this all means and aim to be steadfast in what I can do! I have had some special people in my life who have loved me in extraordinary ways, so I have great examples to follow.
Seek out YOUR calling, my friend! It is healing and life changing at the same time!