Yellow, gray and black. After much thought and consideration of Pinterest, I decided that black, gray, and yellow would be my new color scheme in my new room at school. This is my eleventh year as an elementary school counselor, and my room will be the place I hang out with, listen to, teach, and encourage my kids at school.
That’s how I make clear whether I’m talking about my two sons Nick and Matt—my kids at home—or the 260 kids I get to love on at school every day. It’s such a blessing to encourage kids and serve them and their families as my job. How great is that!
I love this quote from theologian Frederick Buechner:
The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.
For the last five years, the place God calls me to is a school in Kearney, Missouri. School counseling was not my first dream. While working in the corporate world, I volunteered with Young Life and my church and realized that the needs my girls were bringing to me required skills that I just didn’t have. So when I was home with my babies, I went to “counselor school” and prepared myself for the ways God would use me to do good in the right place at the right time.
Some people of faith find working in a public school to be an uncomfortable fit. My experience has been so different! Over and over again, God has called me to partner with churches to do good. With the help of God’s people, we have collected school supplies, held food drives, distributed Thanksgiving dinners, provided shoes and clothes, purchased Christmas gifts and even helped families clean their houses to get rid of lice. My calls to God’s people are always met with “how can we help?” In one especially memorable call, the pastor said, “I was just sitting here praying that someone from the school would call me.”
So this summer, I picked out yellow and gray fabric and my sweet friend made curtains and a chair cover for my room. I painted book cases black and arranged and then rearranged furniture. Sounds like I’m decorating my home, doesn’t it? That’s exactly what I’m doing. My prayer is that I can be the presence of Christ for them, their teachers, and families. The desire of my heart is to create a safe space for kids, to be a safe space for kids.
Beth Dusin lives with her sweet husband, Bob, baseball-playing sons, Nick and Matt, and butter-eating dog, Millie. Besides working as a school counselor, Beth is involved with PTA, teaches youth Sunday School, serves on the board of a local foundation, and likes to read.