Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Connect the Dots

Do you remember playing “connect the dots?” You start with a piece of paper that has many dots on it that appear to be random. Then with a pencil you start connecting those dots based on how they are numbered. At first it doesn’t make sense. It just looks like a wandering line has been added to that jumble of dots. But as more and more dots are connected, a picture starts to emerge that the artist intended. This is an illustration of my life at this time, and it is a terrific feeling! What are some of those “dots” I have experienced that is building this ultimate picture God intends for me?

· One dot was growing up in Michigan where I earned my mechanical engineering degree from Michigan State.

· One dot was meeting my wonderful wife while in college and moving to Virginia right after graduation.

· One dot was (and is) having a terrific son who is now 11 years old who can think of nothing but paintball.

· Another dot was experiencing my parents go through a terrible divorce. So bad that my Dad “disowned” all of us and disappeared. I am happy to say that another dot was recently connected by meeting my Dad after about 12 years of him being absent.

· Another dot has been working for the Navy for over 21 years. I started out as an engineer, but have also been a supervisor and manager. I have traveled all over the world.

· Several dots I have experienced involve being a leader in several voluntary organizations. These include my church at Spotswood Baptist, Boy Scouts and professional societies.

· Other dots have been the establishment of different businesses. One of the current business endeavors was with my wife. A significant amount of learning was required to start a successful online business and now a retail business. But it has been worth it.

It is no accident that a new dot I am now connecting is participating as a member of Toastmasters. There is a tremendous opportunity for me to further my personal development in this organization. But I don’t plan for that to be my first priority. I would like to help many of you to connect some of the dots of your picture as well. So please…don’t be shy about letting me know about areas you can use help. Maybe…just maybe…something in my background or the network I have been building can help you connect a couple of your dots and is one of the main reasons I am now a member of Toastmasters.

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