Every day, students see Mr. Lisson, Director of Christian Life running around Wesleyan. He always seems to be in a hurry, busy with different tasks every day. But a common question among many students is “what is this man always doing?” The Green and Gold decided to get to the bottom of it.
On Wednesday Feb. 28 Lisson filled us in on what he did throughout his day:
Every morning, Lisson wakes up at the crack of dawn (4:30 am specifically). He says that waking up is the worst part of his day. After his struggle to get up, he goes to work out at Orange Theory fitness. Who would have thought he starts his day with a workout, considering his small physique? While at Orange Theory, he sees a plethora of Wesleyan teachers and parents and mingles with them while he works out. After he works out, he spends time with the real Wesleyan mascot, Sam Lisson, his golden retriever and drinks a protein shake to build strength. Before he heads to school, he does what every Christian Life Director should do and spends some time with Jesus with the last part of his calm morning.
When Lisson gets to school, what he spends his mornings doing tend to vary. The morning of Feb. 28, he was busy with Bible department meetings full of Bible teachers talking about biblical things and chicken minis. After his Bible meeting that morning, he spoke with Bible teacher, Nathan Emmelhainz about Wesleyan service opportunities for next year. “One weird thing about my job is that I spend a big chunk of my time focusing on this year, but another big chunk of my time is spent looking at next year. Like when will all school chapel be for spring of 2019?” said Lisson.
Lisson teaches two classes of Contemporary Culture, which is his favorite part of the day. He starts every class with seven minutes of something. Seven minutes of gratitude, silence, trivia, conversation or cultural engagement. That specific day, he started the class periods with seven minutes of silence, which gave his students a chance to catch up on sleep, pray or read the Bible. Then, his classes played “two truths and a lie” and there was not much learning that day. According to Lisson, “There are lots of class periods like that.” That Wednesday, Lisson learned lots of new things about his students. “I learned that Nico almost shot a man once. I love being able to learn crazy facts about my students.
Lisson’s schedule after classes varies every day. Some days are full of meetings and boring emails, but other days are filled with “building forts out of spaghetti and marshmallows and hanging out with students.” That specific day, he did not spend in meetings, but collecting basketball uniforms and folding laundry. And later in the day, he spent time with students, teaching them how to purify water and use electric stoves for the Montana trip. Luckily all of the Montana supplies are in his office, along with many other miscellaneous items in his office such as a giant box of Bibles. “People assume just because I am a Bible teacher they can put all these Bibles in my office, but I don’t need 20 more Bibles,” said Lisson.
Everyday, Lisson’s lunch bunch meets in his office and they eat and chit chat. That day, SAGE was serving barbeque chicken (Lisson’s favorite), but when he got to one line, there was no chicken left. So he went to the other and as he was about to get his chicken, the last piece was taken. Tragic. He hung his head and walked back to his office to talk with his lunch bunch.
His lunch bunch is made up of sophomores Tatum Connor, Jayla Jones, Clara Ortwien, Hannah Wasmuth and Meredith Mangum, with occasional appearances from different seniors such as Megan Gallagher, Ben Connor, and Brae Davidson. Another everyday occurrence for Lisson is the visitations of eight grader Caroline Scott, who stops in a few times each day to talk about her day with him for three minutes at a time.
After a day full of emails and important conversations in his dark windowless office, Lisson reaches his breaking point and has to leave his solitary confinement and take a lap outside to see the light of day and mingle with fellow teachers, students or parents.
When Lisson gets home from school, he typically spends time walking or playing with Sam. It is common to see Lisson and Sam at sporting events around Wesleyan. Sam is Lisson’s best friend along with his eight years old nephew, Jeremiah, age eight. “Yeah…I don’t have many friends my own age,” said Lisson. In his other free time, he reads a lot of books to unleash his nerdier side.
Lisson leads a junior boys Bible study at his house, and that night at Bible study was rather exciting. The Bible study kicked off with junior Hampton Henderson’s car breaking down in the middle of 141. However, Henderson still made it to Bible study so that he could serve his previously given punishment. “Hampton didn’t shave one day, and I noticed it in my class. I told him he could either get a detention, or I could shock him with Sam’s shock collar.” Needless to say, Hampton chose the shock, and in return Lisson is next in line to be shocked. After they finish Bible study, they go to dinner. That night, the group chose a traditional Asian cuisine and spent their evening at Panda Express. “Panda Express’s food is too strong for the forks, so the meal consisted of lots of fork runs,” said Lisson.
A day in the life of Lisson is always unpredictable. “Everyday, I have a schedule, but it is about what happens between the schedule that makes the day so fun,” Lisson said. Some days consist of one time things like broken forks and water purifiers, but everyday consists of hanging out with students, which is what Lisson loves the most.