This year has been a special year, honestly one of the most pivotal in my entire life thus far. It is fitting that the two most important words of 2019 are a part of this ending year blog post title.
Marble and Moments
My joke to myself for most of 2019 was, “Wow I just experienced a Marble Moment!” It became less of a joke and sincerely more of a challenge to myself to really reflect and cherish pivotal moments that had and were continuing to shape my life. The phrase Marble Moment came from my special summer trip to Marble, Colorado; where each day became filled with moments that called on my full presence and complete attention.
What makes this phrase even more relevant is that my #OneWord for 2019 was Moments. This is the link to that post! (I’m still holding on to my 2020 word till the New Year!) https://perennialeducator.wordpress.com/2019/01/01/moments-oneword2019/ It is amazing how the Lord works in our lives and it is even more spectacular in how when we release and allow him to move that he will weave our story/purpose together.
As a reflection on the year 2019 I’ve gone back to think of the Five Marble Moments that have occurred; moments that much like marble will likely have lasting impact for years to come!
Marble Moment #1 – Releasing Now (April 28th, 2019)
I won’t lie, the 2018 – 2019 school year was the hardest year of teaching for me thus far and very well possibly for the remainder of my career (I hope!) We were moving into a new facility, everyday something was going wrong with construction or deliveries that disrupted my teaching. I was constantly stressed, in the midst of a deep depression from family issues imploding at the same time on multiple fronts, deadlines passed and I was left sinking and for the first time felt like I wasn’t the one who could see this all through.
I dreaded going to work and felt exhausted with little joy to share with others. My bus kids were most times the brightest part of my day, but I was stressing about horrible road conditions in the worst winter in recent memory. They literally were the little ones who kept me going.
To add to all this, our Bond Committee and School Board desperately wanted to have an Open House to show off all the new facilities. It added even more stress as my students and I struggled to get the shop and everything else ready in time. The day arrived and I cannot share the disappointment and failure I felt, nothing was where it needed to be and so many things were half-finished. People would flood in and see the sad estate of our mission…failure.
Yet, that is not what happened at all. First off, I thank my students because I was exhausted, but they ran the whole Open House on our side. I got to step back and watch. Our Animal/Vet Science students ran the small animal lab and our patrons were amazed at what they were doing and the animals we were caring for.
Our shop students were showing off the projects they were building and the sense of pride they had for what had been so far was contagious. Not only to me, but the community members who passed through. I left that Open House, honored to be an instructor for these young people, they are truly the reason why I’m there and what kept me going. It was there I released my selfish need of wanting everything done NOW; and cherished the journey that we were all on together as we built and finished a facility we could all have a heart in.
Marble Moment #2 – Hired as a Bartender (May 11th, 2019)
I was at a graduation party…got a tour of the new pub from Misty, one of my student’s parents and next thing I knew I was accepting a position as a bartender. How little did I know what type of impact that decision would have on the rest of the year and the future direction of my ministry work!
While working at the bar, I’ve learned more about community, love, and listening to the nudging of God than ever before. It’s lessons have seeped into every facet of my life and I’m blessed to have it as a much-needed outlet from the educator hat I had on almost perpetually. Here is a link that gives some insights into the influence that role has had on me: https://perennialeducator.wordpress.com/2019/11/30/why-we-judge-and-why-we-must-stop/
Marble Moment #3 – Saying Yes to God and Annelle (June 1st, 2019)
Going to Men’s Encounter changed the trajectory of my life…period. On the evening of June 1st, I asked and fully accepted the Holy Spirit into my life as a guide towards fulfilling God’s will. Realigning my priorities and accepting the fullness of grace and love from God was so powerful, especially coming at the end of my toughest year in teaching.
It was also while at Men’s Encounter that I truly committed to my relationship with Annelle and what that meant for our marriage. I gave up the list of professional development workshops and conferences I was scheduled to help with and I gave my summer to Annelle and her needs. This was the best summer of my life, a summer made fully available to the person I fully intend to spend the rest of my life with. Our marriage is by no means perfect and we both have a share in that, but we’ve made strides to repair pains and hurt that have accumulated over eight years of marriage. It has been tough having some of those conversations, but in the end we know it will be completely worth it. Thank you to all the family and friends who have poured their love and prayers into our lives.
Marble Moments #4 – Marble, CO Trip (July 30th – Aug. 3rd, 2019)
This will be a tough trip to follow…
Marble, Colorado will forever hold a special place in my heart and I have a strong sense that this will not be my last time in the town. I could go on and on, but it might be better to reference the raw emotions I share in the blog post about my summer here:
Marble Moment #5 – BV Ag Ed Vision 2025 Adopted (December 19th, 2019)
Finally, this Marble Moment has been one in the making for nearly a year since last February. What made it so special though was that I released control of the process. It was guided by Alumni Board members, community patrons, students, and everyone else. As it should be mind you!
When we met as an Advisory Council on December 19th, for the first time I let the council set the targets and tactics for the year 2020. In all our years past I was the one stressing to put it all together and I released that! What came of the conversation and target setting was the best Council meeting we have ever had. Allowing others to have ownership is powerful and I wish I’d done this sooner. BV Ag Ed Vision 2025 is truly the communities vision of our program and I am excited to see how it will influence our students, school, and community in the years to come!
These are just a few smattering of the key moments from 2019. I owned my #OneWord Moments and fully intend to do so with my 2020 #OneWord. Cherish the final moments of this year and decade tonight with family and friends. I know we will be continuing the family tradition of the past 12 years celebrating New Years Eve all together.
Take care my friends and see you all in 2020! 🙂