We were standing in the outside lobby waiting for the doors to open for the main evening concert. During this waiting time a small group of eight professional singers were entertaining us. They were amazing!
The short soprano’s powerful voice firmly hit and held such a high note (singing ‘freeeee!’) I actually looked up to see if the glass in the chandelier would shatter! No kidding!
The presentation included several seasonal songs featuring the different singers one-by-one. The tall lady soprano had a strong lush tone perfect for her part. Next, a short thin man with an amazing high tenor voice rich with tone delighted the crowd with his solo. At the end of one of the songs, a deep bass singer was featured. Whoa! That man could sing way-down-deep-down-low!
Toward the very last song, the super high soprano’s powerful voice was featured. It was not thin and piercing like many high voices, but strong and forceful. That is why I looked up to see if any glass was shattering!
The crowd was so delighted, entertained and uplifted by the exceptional presentation that they responded multiple times with loud applause and shouts of appreciation. It was truly outstanding!
And it was obvious that each singer was well trained, had practiced many hours, and proved themselves to be worthy of singing in this great group! Each one was very well prepared!
Performance of Excellence
But even though each singer was exceptional, no single individual made that presentation exceptional. It was their excellence working together that made the difference.
By you becoming excellent ‘AND’ working together with like-minded excellent people, you will put your career into a place of excellence not otherwise possible.
Educating “me” is really all about “we”
When talking about seeking spiritual gifts, the Apostle Paul encouraged us to especially seek prophecy, which in the New Testament is speaking to encourage others and uplift the whole body of Christ. His main point is that each one of us has differing gifts, but each gift contributes to the whole to make a healthy body. That is the purpose of our gift. (Read I Corinthians 12 and I Corinthians 14:1-5)
One of my favorite college courses to teach is ‘Foundations of Adult Learning’ which addresses the importance of learning our different personal gifts. This not only helps us realize the strengths and weaknesses of our own gift but illuminates and deepens our understanding of other gifts as well. Students who have taken this course will all tell you it is not hard to learn, but the learning is far more insightful and revealing than they ever heard before.
I love to hear the ‘Wow!’ comments when adult students realize how perceptive this understanding makes them. It is especially gratifying when they return to class the next week, exclaiming how positively it helped them to deal with a customer, a fellow worker and even their supervisor more effectively at work! (Ah-hem! Sometimes it’s their wife or husband at home they tell us about! That results in some very entertaining class conversations!)
The key idea is…when we receive insightful training, it not only helps us individually but greatly helps us in our vocation on the job. Someone else said it first, “It’s NOT all about me, it’s all about ‘WE!’”
From a professor’s point of view
When I meet people for the first time, and they discover I am a teacher, they usually ask, “Oh, what do you teach?” My typical answer is, “I teach students!” Though they laugh, I am absolutely serious.
I know they want me to tell them what subject I teach, but I am a training and education specialist. No matter what course or subject I am teaching in a semester, each student is very important to me, and their learning is my job.
Think about it with me. Every person is different. First, each adult student has a different personal gifting and way of learning. Second, in every class there is a different multi-cultural mix of individuals that makes up the group. Also, each group of students has a slightly different education level (a different mix of subjects and courses previously accomplished), and a slightly different career goal in mind.
For instance, there may be a group of all education majors in a particular class. But each one may be considering a different teaching or administration level (like elementary, middle school, high school, higher education, or even corporate training.)
Even though every student has a different career goal to become an educator, they (as a group) will certainly end up working in conjunction with one another in the future.
So, their current training goal is to become excellent personally, so they can contribute to the excellence of the whole. We (as a people) NEED every position filled with a person of excellence so ‘WE’ may function successfully.
The key to skyrocketing career performance
The foundation and super-glue to all this happening in real time is to infuse our career with our faith in God. God is love. Infusing love into our vocation will bring not only our individual effectiveness to another level but contribute greatly to our group. It will make us all become something far more than we could ever be alone.
1 Corinthians 12:12,7. The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ…A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other.
Steve Davis, Ed.S. is an Adjunct Professor at Trinity International University – Florida. Visit tiu.edu/florida
Read last month’s article by a TIU professor at: https://www.goodnewsfl.org/psychology-counseling-and-the-forgotten/