Tomorrow will be Rus's last day as a teacher and coach. Wow. That seems so weird.
A few weeks ago I mentioned that some things we had been praying about were coming to fruition. This is it! Monday, October 27th, Rus will report to work at Samson Resources. It is an oil company based in Tulsa. This will be a HUGE change for him. We are excited, nervous, scared, anxious, and blessed to be beginning this new adventure. God has been in complete control of all of this, and we can't wait to see where He leads us.
A little background...
If you know Rus at all, you know how much he loves baseball. It is one of his GREAT passions. He played in high school, college, and professionally. He has always said that he felt coaching baseball was his calling. God has allowed him to impact so many lives while coaching this sport. At first, he was the coach that taught history; but gradually he became the history buff by morning and the baseball coach by afternoon! When he got his first teaching job (6th grade World History at Bartlesville Public Schools - wow), he was scared to death to enter the classroom. It was simply something he was doing so that he could coach. By last year, he had the entire school board in his room to watch him teach a lesson to his sophomore US History class using Web Streaming. Needless to say, "the coach that taught history" was impacting just as many lives off the field as he was on!
In his 10 years of teaching/coaching, we have been blessed with 2 beautiful daughters. Because we felt that God called me to stay at home with our girls, Rus took on more and more extra-duty roles at school in order to make this possible. Even during his off season, this kept him away from home many nights out of the week. By the time baseball season would role around, we were already used to being "without" him at home. As anyone could possibly see, this took its toll. It took his toll on him. On me. On the girls. On our marriage. On our family. Something had to give.
This past summer we began to pray that God would open doors and provide a way for us to be able to be together more as a family without it being a huge financial strain. We recognized the fact that for the past 4 years God had provided a way for us to make things work out financially and we gave Him praise for that. But we also prayed about the fact that in order to make things work out financially it was coming at a sacrifice to our time together. From there, we began to talk about the possibility of him leaving the field of education and coaching. I clearly remember staying up late one night talking about it and asking him how he felt about having to give up coaching. His reply was, "Honestly, it feels like cutting off my leg. I can't imagine life without it."
As the school year approached and doors began to close on other possibilities, we decided that God was leading us to stay where we were. Rus started the school year and began off-season with his boys just like always. In the meantime, my mom asked if it would be okay to write a letter to a man in her church that is a VP with Samson. She said she simply wanted to tell him about Rus and about what we had been praying about over the summer. We talked about it and told her it would be fine to write the letter. Since the school year had begun, we didn't really think much about it, and kind of put the thought out of our minds.
Well...a few weeks after the letter was sent, Rus got a call from Samson asking him to come in for an interview. I'll spare you the details from there...it's pretty easy to figure out what happened. What I will tell you is that between that 1st interview and tomorrow there have been COUNTLESS prayers said and MANY hours spent trying to make the right decision. We are so humbled and blessed by God's grace for us. We are so grateful for His provision and wisdom. While this would never have been our timing, He knows best and we can't wait to see what this new adventure brings.
As a wife, I am incredibly grateful to be married to a man that would be willing to give up one of his great loves just for our family. As a mom, I am proud to parent with someone who puts his children first. Our girls don't realize it now, but they have an incredibly unselfish daddy who just did something amazing FOR THEM!
I know how scared I am to begin this new stage of life, so I can't even imagine how Rus is feeling. To start something completely new and foreign...well, that's just flat out BRAVE.
So, next Monday morning at 8 o'clock, when you're heading to work or fixing breakfast or driving your kids to school, please say a prayer for Rus. He will be entering Corporate America for the first time, and you know what? I think Corporate America will look a little bit better on Monday morning, due to a certain new employee at Samson Resources!