Mark had been without work since the end of 2010. He had begun to coach his daughter’s futsal (Brazilian indoor soccer) team of 4th and 5th grade girls in the city’s futsal league. This diverse inner city team went on to beat the number two suburban team in the top bracket in one game. This group of racially and economically diverse urban girls with a good program, equipment, and coaching flourished, competed, and had a lot of fun with their suburban peers.
And his wife, Sarah, had been watching his teaching skill. She suggested a career change to teaching. A peer group Mark convened to test possible careers concurred that teaching was an option. Sarah volunteered Mark to teach the chess club at her private school. Next, knowing of his master’s degree in business and finance and past experience in that field, she arranged for Mark to observe a math teacher at her school who was “high tech savvy.”
Then, Mark trained for and began teaching life skills at a nearby community college. When the college called him to teach, it was, for him, a sign that this was, indeed, the new career for him. This year, he is teaching math at that community college, Quantitative Reasoning at the state university, and is taking two graduate level courses at a third university.
Mark: “Above all I want to acknowledge Sarah’s support and patience with me during this difficult transition time. She was the one who recommended my career change over my initial skepticism and has been there for me along the way offering encouragement, connections and the ability to see the glass half full rather than half empty. If someone had suggested to me last August that I try to do what I am doing now, I would have laughed it off as impossibly ambitious. Here I am and my cup runneth over.”
How did you see God’s Spirit at work in Sarah?
“It’s a wonderful example of a loving , supporting presence that doesn’t give up on you. I’m discovering what a marriage partner is like in new ways.”
How did you see God’s Spirit at work in you in taking her advice?
“I was open and receptive to it. When the call came to teach, that was the time to take the plunge into college teaching.”