Keep in Mind the Long Game
One of the dynamics that we face as staff and faculty in Catholic schools is the immediate pressures of the job: budgets, homework and exam grading, admissions for the upcoming school year etc. There can be a temptation to simply focus only on the immediate things right in front of you to constantly chase the situations that are loudestly, drawing your attention. However, Wisdom would remind us of the fact that we need to keep the long game in mind. Formation of students takes time, effort, and prayer. We are ultimately preparing our students for a future beyond the walls of our school. So everything that we do needs to be done with that perspective in mind. One pertinent book that came out in regards to this topic last month, by Harvard Business School Press, is, “The Long Game: How to Be a Long-Term Thinker in a Short-Term World,” by Dorie Clark.
We obviously need to be mindful of the short-term effects of our decisions but at the same time keep in mind that we ultimately need to consider the long game when making decisions. Often, difficult decisions might cause some pain and anger in the short-term but in the end will bring about positive effects in the long-term. For example, sometimes removing a student from the school preserves the culture of the school in a way that is painful in the immediate sense, but will build a healthier school in the long-term. Finally, we are to keep in mind that the ultimate goal of all our efforts is to foster in students the faith and virtues that will dispose them for the life of Heaven. Passing on to them a living faith will give them something that will last a lifetime and even unto Eternal Life.
Father Paul Kostka