This month, Jose Ramon Rodriguez, the Dominican Republic Program Director, discusses the Edify Core Value: Be joyful, be thankful, and have fun! He shares how a decision to choose joy can transform your work environment. Over the past few months, our staff has been sharing their heart and “reflections” on the Edify core values and why they are so important to us. Last month, Godfrey Lugoloobi, Rwanda’s Country Director, shared on the Core Value: A Commitment to Prayer.

“ Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.” Philippians 4: 4-5

For me, the Edify Core Value “Be joyful, be thankful and have fun” is an invitation to live life and enjoy it while working. It is an invitation to find joy in all we do, especially our workFrequently, offices become places filled with stress and tension for those who work there. Edify seeks to be different.

Paul asks his Philippian brothers to rejoice and celebrate their joy. As we rejoice, we become tender and gentle to others and hope they are thus drawn to our way of seeing the world because of the joy they witness in us.

Exercising this value has been a real challenge for the Dominican Republic staff recently. In the last two years, the Dominican government has invested significant amounts of money in the public education sector, which has directly affected private Christian schools involved in Edify’s programs. During visits and trainings, we hear once and again the proprietor and staffs’ worries about the future of their schools and the fear that they will ultimately lose what they have invested so much in.

As we stare at this phenomenon of fear and pain, it is easy to become downcast. However, we encourage one another to remember we are called to “Be joyful, be thankful, and have fun.”  We’re not denying our reality and forgetting about the situation we are in. However, as we recognize our struggles, we look for ways to thank God for what He’s done in the past, what He’s doing now, and what He will do in the future. As Edify staff, we transmit hope while also searching for solutions. We hope to provoke a radical change in the downcast moods of school proprietors and personnel so they can also be dressed in the new hope we have in Jesus.

Edify is an organization that values being joyful, being thankful, and having fun. With this Core Value in mind and as our aim, our workplace becomes a space for full life, even amidst the storms outside.

Jose Ramón Rodriguez
Program Director, Dominican Republic

About the Author

Jose Ramon is Edify’s Director of Dominican Republic Programs. He brings his depth of experience in church and school leadership to provide oversight for all Edify programs in the Dominican Republic. His degree in Organizational Management equips him to guide teams strategically. He served as the Director of a Christian school in San Juan de la Marguana and was the Program Director for World Vision, Dominican Republic before assuming pastorship of Iglesia Cristiana Comunitaria in Santo Domingo. In 2014, Jose Ramon joined Edify as Program Director Dominican Republic. He lives in Santo Domingo with his wife and two children and is committed to leading morning devotionals in his neighborhood.