Friday, May 20, 2011

Time for gratitude

It's the end of the year. I mean the Georgia educational system school year. We start in August and we end in May, a month's difference than the school year I was employed by in Maine, which was on a September to June schedule.

End of year usually means reflection on the past and reviewing hopes for the future. I substitute taught in this system for two years and this year I got the permanent job. It has regular hours, medical benefits, and is clean work. More importantly, it's with kids, my calling and first love. It was a miracle that I got this job last July in a tight economy with many qualified applicants. I am grateful for it and count it as a blessing.

Best of all, I work in a school system run by people I admire and respect. I admire my principal who is a woman of great skills, passion for children, and integrity in her work. She is loyal to employees, but fair, and has high standards. I enjoy that she is approachable and that she runs a tight ship. She is also a Christian. What else can an employee ask for? Nothing.

I enjoy that the Superintendent is a moral man, a Christian who is also a man of great skills, has integrity, and is fair with high standards. It is important to me that I am part of a system that is run by people I respect. It is a terrible thing to be embarrassed by your boss. Rather, in my case, I have people whose example I strive to live up to. This is a blessing.

The school year beginning was a scary one for me because it has been 21 years since I was employed as an employee. I have either run my own business or have freelanced most of my life. But the people I work with are tremendous. I enjoy all my colleagues. They are good people! They are local moms and grandmoms, community members in this small community with whom I go to church, and see at the library, the Rec Department, the store. They are friendly and warm. They welcomed me, a stranger, into their fold and I am grateful to know them all. It is a blessing to like the people you work with.

After school today, the last day, I went grocery shopping. I value that I have a good, locally run grocery store just two miles from my work, and that quality, affordable foods are offered there. This is rare these days, that I can not only afford food, but I have access to GOOD food. I really love that a local family owns the store and they are civic minded. I would frequent their store even if it was not close, for this reason. I am grateful that I have good food in my fridge. I just finished scrambled eggs with fresh tomatoes, toast, and home fries. That's more than a lot of people get in a week.

I am really grateful that I have a solid bible-believing church to go to. This is rare these days. It is helmed by a wonderful pastor who is loving and friendly but also extremely knowledgeable about the bible and preaches with a passion and love for Jesus that just makes you love Jesus more. I enjoy the folks at my church and in my Sunday School class, who again, welcomed me into their world lovingly and openly. They have helped me when I needed help and I know they are there for me if I need help again, as they know I would help them too. It is a blessing to really like the people you worship with.

I am blessed I live in a place like this:

It is my back yard. I'm not homeless, and I don't live near a quarry, or a garbage dump or live in a place like Tijuana or Calcutta. The Lord gave me a beautiful, peaceful place to dwell when I am not at worship or work. What a blessing.

No matter the tumult in the world, I am richly blessed in my sphere and I know it. Summer itself is another blessing. It is glorious around here, and just 4 miles down the road is a State Park with a river to swim in and a waterfall to enjoy. Thank you Lord for the riches you've given me, and I am grateful.


Anonymous said...

Thank you, Elizabeth for being in my life! I love you. You are a dear christian friend. And I want to thank God for sending you to Georgia!!!

Child of God said...

This is beautiful! Such nice blessings coming from a thankful heart. I believe the community is blessed having you as well.