Sunday, February 12, 2017

Revisiting "10 Commandments to Working in a Hostile Environment"

As a follower of Christ, I know that it reigns on the just and the unjust. I know that we battle not against flesh and blood but against enemies in the unseen world. I know that my battles are far more "spiritual" than "natural." I blogged about this book 5 years ago, I think I initially read it about 8 years ago. I found myself revisiting it's "commandments" recently and thought I'd share them. 

1- Know that you are anointed for the job position that you hold. 
Teaching is my ministry. I've always walked in the authority and power of God when it came to my teaching and I thank God daily for the talents and treasures he's placed on the inside of me. Even when I want to walk away, there's no way I could, teaching is my calling and I can't imagine doing anything else.  

2- Don't expect to be appreciated.
This is something that I've struggled with. Over the last year I've had a hard time "feeling appreciated," I know I'm appreciated, but I don't ever really "feel" that way. Then I realized that I had unrealistic expectations of people. As long as I'm walking in obedience then God will be pleased. 

3- Embrace opportunities for change.
In a way, I love change. I've never been in any school... when I was school age or teaching for longer than four years until now. I attended five schools growing up, due to being military. I'm teaching at the fourth school of my career. I've been here for 6 years. I have no idea what doors God might open me, so in the meantime I'll embrace any opportunities he has for me. 

4- Do the job well while remembering the vision.

5- Don't let the environment get inside of you.
I have to remember that "greater is he that is in me, then he that is in the world." It's so easy to get caught in that negativity trap, I know, I've been caught several times. But I'm realizing that I can state something that I don't agree with without dwelling and complaining on the issue. 

6- Increase your capacity to work with difficult personalities.
Lord knows I've had plenty of opportunities to do this and God keeps giving me more of them! But there is a fine line between tolerating difficult personalities and entertaining foolishness. I can work with difficult people, but I will not put up with tomfoolery. My motto "Miss me with the foolishness."   

7- Where you are is not where you're going.
My prayer is for God to order my steps in his word, so I just have to remember that where I currently am may be temporary. 

8- Achieve optimal results with minimal confusion.
God is not the author of confusion, if there is confusion, it is from the enemy. My goal is to always be transparent. With my students, their parents, my colleagues. I've found that if there is transparency in situations, there will be very little confusion. 

9- Do not pledge allegiance to cliques and groups.
Now I have some very good friends that work at my school. There is one in Kindergarten and First grade that are my core. The Word says "Iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." These ladies are my iron, they are believers and I can call on them to pray for me when I can't find the words to pray for myself. There are two more ladies, one in second grade and one on my grade level and we are pretty good friends as well. We check on each other, we encourage each other, we laugh together and cry together. Friendships are one thing but cliques are "restricted groups." With them can come negativity and sometimes they use their power to hurt others by excluding them or by being mean. This is what you want to stay away from. Most times you don't even realize you are apart of a clique until the damage to others is already done and your own reputation and integrity is questioned. 

10- Always keep your song near you.
Take this literally... whether it's before or after school, or even during resources. I've started playing my inspirational music again and it's really helped me stay centered. I have my "going to work playlist" that puts me in full worship mode before I even arrive at school. Then my "getting ready for the day playlist" that puts me in a positive mood before my students arrive. My goal is to always have a word of praise on my lips. 

My spirit has been heavy for about a month now. Between the news, the demands of teaching and this upper respiratory thing I got going on, I'm not going to sugar coat it... I have been struggling. But I know that trouble doesn't last always and at the end of the day I have to remember my purpose and my purpose is to teach those children to the best of my ability and I don't have time for anything that is going to interfere with that. 


  1. Thank you for this posting. It was much needed in my own situation. You are an inspiration to me.

  2. I am behind in reading my blogs and reading this today was just what I needed.

  3. Dear Jessica, you are so APPRECIATED. Thank you for your kindness and generosity. Yes, I was sad too, but we will get through this. We will continue to teach with kindness and compassion , just the way that we live our lives. It is always cool to be kind. Negativity and hatred eat people up inside. Hopefully, they will figure this out. I know we are all stronger together ❤️. May God lift your burdens. May he let you see how appreciated you are . May he heal your sickness . I know we are stronger together 🌹🌷

  4. I have just come across your blog and am very thankful I did.Thank you for your words of encouragement. As I prepare for the new school year I will be thinking of your "commandments".

  5. Thank you for sharing this posting on the "10 Commandments" Your thoughts really spoke to me today. (For me a difficult fellow colleague). "Don't let the environment get inside of you"-I am where God wants me to be and my mission is to make a difference in my student's lives!