Hope and FaithBy TIM GETER,
Emily Dickinson once said that “hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul and sings the tune without the words and never stops at all.”
The principal at Lake Elementary School, Lisa Seale, has based her entire life around the concepts of hope and faith. She has built her life upon the solid rock of God that has held her up through many of life’s trials. To Seale trials of life are blessings.
Seale was born August 25, 1969. Growing up she had always wanted to be a teacher. “I always had to be the teacher when it came to my brother and sister,” she said.
Seale attended school at Lake. In 1987 earning the citizenship award and business award she graduated top 10 as an honor graduate. From there she went on to attend East Central Community College, then transferring to Livingston now known as the University of West Alabama.
After leaving Livingston she took a job at Laird Home Health in medical records sustaining that job for four years.
After her four years at Laird she started work at the Newton County Justice Court as the Clerk for seven years. While working at the courthouse she was introduced to many scenarios of peoples’ lives mostly involving some type of criminal act. Seale was faced with a situation that lead her into a direction that she explains as a gift from God. “God does things in our lives that at the time we may not understand, but with faith all things are possible through God,” Seale said.
A neighbor that Seale had known was arrested for murder. “I was in shock, but he told me something that I will never forget. After talking with him he told me that no one ever cared about him,” she said. “At that moment, I realized that if something so terrible like this could happen because of the emptiness of ones soul from the lack of others love and care for him, then I was going to make it my duty to help fill in the gap of love and care that so many people especially children suffer from.” Seale at this time in her life knew that it was finally time to become that one thing she always wanted to be — a school teacher.
In 2000, Seale graduated from Mississippi State University. This same year is when she met her husband Gary Seale. She then started teaching at Hawkins Middle School in Forest, she taught there for three years. During the school year of 2004-2005 she taught at Lake Elementary.
Seale taught in the classroom for six years. Subsequently, a position came open when the principal of Lake Elementary, Marcia Purvis, was transferred to Betty May Jack middle school in Morton, allowing Seale to take over as the new principal at LES. “I have been here ever since,” she said.
Life can be full of perils at times but if one has enough hope and faith then that person can look beyond that.
In August 2015, Seale was Diagnosed with breast cancer, that same year she endured a mastectomy and another in 2016 just for precautionary measures. Seale’s faith never ceased. Seale said, “the biggest message from this, is that the children that I oversee can see hope at work,” She also said that one can talk about the words hope and faith, but when a child sees it — it becomes very special.
Inspiration in Seale’s case would be described as an understatement. She did not take off any extended periods of time during her bout with cancer. Seale only missed four days. “I did not have compromised lymph nodes so I didn’t consider taking any treatments,” she said. “I love my job, and I couldn’t ask for a better staff and community to which this school revolves around.”
As a parent and raising six children: Will, Gary Jr, Meagan, Hannah, Anna Grace, and Ryan, Seale said, “it’s not just about helping the kids it’s also about helping the parents.”