“Hi, ho, hi, ho, it’s off to work we go!” sang the dwarfs in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

Another version that I’ve heard is “I owe, I owe, it’s off to work I go!” And, there is some truth to that. Certainly, one of the reasons we work is to be able to pay our bills and to buy what we need to live. But working just to pay bills or disliking your job can make going to work a real burden. And for many, many people their work is a real burden that they must bear.

On the other hand, the seven dwarfs seemed to have a special blessing – it appeared that they really enjoyed going to work. You just can sense that in their song.

I have been truly blessed throughout my life. I have held many interesting jobs and there have been very few days that I haven’t enjoyed going to work. And one of the principles I’ve tried to apply to every job is found in Colossians 3:23, “And whatsoever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.”

I learned early in life to seek the Lord’s will and leading to find jobs. I’ve learned to do my best work, in all situations, as His representative and to please Him. I’ve learned that whether my boss is good or bad, I’m not working for the boss, but for the Lord. And that has made my jobs more than just tolerable, but both interesting and enjoyable.

The first job that I remember is cutting grass for my dentist, Dr. Charles Eshleman, on Broad St. I also remember, about the same time, just after moving to Lititz, that I went door-to-door selling greeting and Christmas cards. I doubt that I earned much money doing this.

In junior high I began to umpire Little League baseball games. Then I received my first “big break” when I was hired to keep score for a men’s softball league. This led to writing articles about the games for the Lititz Record Express. Soon this expanded to writing reports about Little League games. By the time I reached ninth and tenth grades I was beginning to cover all Lititz and Warwick sports events. I wrote two regular weekly columns for the Lititz Record Express – Spotlight On Sports and High School Highlights – until I graduated from high school. I also worked for two years for a local medical agency delivering surgical supplies in several counties each night after school.

For two summers I worked two weeks at Mizpah Grove helping to set up and tear down tents and prepare for Camp Meeting. Then for two summers I spent five to seven weeks there in Allentown working in the camp store. Here I learned valuable lessons in organization, sales, and handling of money. I developed good friendships with many, many people and I grew spiritually by attending the services. I also worked on the ice truck selling blocks of ice to tenters each morning. Working here was a very special opportunity, which the Lord provided for me.

At home my writing for the local newspaper expanded and for two summers I worked fulltime for the paper. I covered all the local news, attended meetings, wrote headlines, helped with layout of the pages, and even sold advertising.

After I graduated from high school I worked for two summers with the Lancaster Sunday News in both the Lancaster and York offices. Again, I covered all sorts of news and assignments and even had a chance to take some pictures. I especially enjoyed the time I worked in sports, in preparing the weekly TV Guide, and in covering the courthouse.

After my sophomore year I went back to the Lititz Record Express where for that one summer I actually worked as acting editor and was responsible for the entire weekly layout and production. This was a major responsibility that I thoroughly enjoyed. For two weeks before I was needed in this job I worked at a cemetery in Sunbury. Here I helped dig graves by hand, fill the graves after burial, and cut grass. That was very hard physical work.

Though I was headed for a teaching job, I wasn’t done with newspaper work. The summer after my junior year I worked for the Sunbury Daily Item editorial staff. Then for 25 years I worked again for the Lancaster Newspapers covering football games and some basketball games on a part time basis. I covered many Saturday football games for Penn Manor, Donegal and Columbia in particular. I enjoyed keeping stats and writing the stories.

While in college I also worked as an assistant in the chemistry lab, washing dishes in the dining hall, and serving as a dorm monitor. For most of these four years I also traveled with the football and basketball teams keeping all the statistics for Susquehanna and reporting them to the NCAA. I thoroughly enjoyed this part of my college experience and never thought of it as work.

After a summer of picking apples and cherries for Cherry Hill Orchards, I began my 39-year teaching career at Penn Manor. I had four job interviews – Hershey, Donegal, Elizabethtown, and Penn Manor – and received a job offer at all four. It was a hard choice, but the Lord directed me to Penn Manor and I never regretted this decision. I always felt a call from the Lord to be a missionary in the public schools and I think this calling helped make me content in this job.

For the first three years I served as a math teacher and then the Lord allowed me to become department chairman. For the remaining 36 years I served in similar positions and I ended my years there as the district math supervisor for grades K-12. I also had special opportunities during this time to serve as PR Coordinator, Computer Coordinator, TELLS and Chapter I math coordinator (we won national recognition for this program). I coached freshman, boys’ basketball (NBA star and Seattle Supersonics owner Wally Walker played for me), boys’ varsity and freshman track, freshman cheerleaders and I served as a timer, scorekeeper, and track official. I advised the Berean Club and the National Honor Society and served on many district committees. I have many great memories from these 39 years at Penn Manor!

Over the years I had many additional part time jobs. I taught adult education (GED), served as an adjunct math professor at Millersville, tried to sell World Book, worked on the editorial board of Books In Print, served for over 25 years as chief basketball statistician for the PIAA, ran the clock for play-off games at the Farm Show Building, tutored many students in math, served as a consultant for an Addison Wesley geometry text, wrote SAT questions, and helped develop a computer touch-screen mathematics program for ICS. What interesting experiences.

As a result of my work experiences, I urge you to seek the Lord’s will in looking for every job. When you are in His will you will find a job that is both interesting and satisfying. It may be challenging but He’ll give you wisdom and direction when you “work for Him”.

And remember, money is not the measure of success (but don’t forget to honor Him with your tithe). Being in His will is the true measure of success. Work heartily and enthusiastically (don’t be a complainer or a slacker like others) to please the Lord and hopefully you’ll be able to sing, with a smile on your face, “hi ho, hi ho, it’s off to work I go!”


Horace A. Kauffman

Horace A. Kauffman (New Cumberland
High School - math)

Barry L. Kauffman  (Penn Manor - math)

Colossians 3:23

“And whatsoever you do, do it heartily,
as to the Lord,
and not unto men.”