Chaplaincy wasn’t part of my plan. I thought I was answering God’s calling 14 years ago by becoming an English teacher at an Episcopal school. Now, I know that was just another step in a lifelong journey. We’re always called, but hearing it isn’t always easy. I don’t hear God’s voice in burning bushes or in the clouds overhead, but there’s always a persistent nudge to work for His greater kingdom.
Episcopal schools are in a unique position to do that work, to reach and teach all of God’s children. The Episcopal Church’s reliance on scripture, tradition, and reason provides an exceptional framework for Episcopal schools. We shepherd our students to the knowledge they seek, assist them with the context to understand, and encourage them to use the reason God gave them.
Let’s face it, our kids find themselves in a world that tells them that they are the center of the universe. Our job is to remind them that God is at the heart of our world, that He is always at work, and that the spiritual life is the only real life. God’s love, grace, and mercy are far greater than our narrow self-interests, and the job that Jesus commanded us to do, to love our neighbor as ourselves, we can accomplish in Episcopal schools.
This is my third year as a lay chaplain. I’m also a postulant in The Episcopal Church in Western Louisiana, a seminarian at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, a teacher, a husband, and a father. Sometimes my plate seems too full, but I also know that my cup is always running over.
I’m just trusting God on this journey, wherever it takes me. Sometimes it feels like I’m adrift at sea without a paddle or even a shoreline in sight. But faith keeps you afloat, and God’s grace and love will always sustain you.
R. Reese Fuller is Chaplain at Episcopal School of Acadiana, Broussard, LA.