Throughout my time as a Marketing and Communications Intern, I was charged with writing two blog posts. As an Enneagram 3, I wanted to write something that was moving but informative, intellectual but funny. As I took time to decide what to write, I heard about an Edify staff member in the Dominican Republic, Clara. Clara had attended a school before it began partnering with Edify, and came on staff with Edify in 2021 as a Christian Transformation and Training Officer (CTTO). I planned to interview Clara to shed some light on the change that Edify had continued to generate within the schools that we partner with. The story would highlight the transformation that Edify is enacting, and I was eager to showcase all that Edify had done.
However, after talking with Clara, it was actually my definition of what transformation and success truly represented that were altered in writing this blog. Instead of having a grand sense of pride about Edify’s work, I was able to gain a greater sense of what glorifying the Lord looks like in the midst of success.
As we gathered together, I began by asking Clara questions about her education and work experience. Clara attended a prestigious school in the Dominican Republic for elementary and middle school. But due to family hardships, she had to transfer to a low-fee independent Christian school in order to complete high school. Although she wasn’t particularly excited at the prospect of attending the low-fee school, through this experience Clara’s character developed as she learned humility and contentment. Soon after, she started going to church with her mom, and came to fully understand the vision of the church and her new school. She now clearly sees the Lord’s hand throughout her whole educational story and His guidance of her heart.
After graduation, Clara became an assistant to the school secretary while also teaching English. It wasn’t until she started working at Edify that she realized Edify had been providing training, loans, and guidance for her school for several years!
As I asked questions that would allow me to point to the work of Edify, Clara continuously redirected the conversation toward the ways the Lord has been and will continue to work. Clara exclaimed, “being able to see the change in the students is amazing. You know that they are receiving transformation not necessarily because Edify is working directly with them, but because the teachers continue to be transformed, and the principals have been transformed [by the Gospel].”
Throughout the process of writing this blog, I have become acutely aware of the ways we can choose to celebrate and glorify the Lord rather than our own accolades. Ultimately, all of our successes are because they are according to His will and purpose. What a gift it is to be INVITED into His work and get to experience the magnificence of what He is doing!
That is the heart of Edify, ringing true through Clara’s story: We find joy in joining the Lord as we come alongside the ways that He is working all around the world.