Whatever you call me to God; help me to see it as my opportunity to change the world. At a recent leadership training session, I presented the following quote and asked for participants to guess from a list of multiple choice answers who they thought had said it. Here’s the quote:
“There are moments in our lives when we summon the courage to make choices that go against reason, against common sense, and the wise counsel of people we trust. But we lean forward nonetheless because despite all risks and rational argument, we believe that the path we are choosing is the right and best thing to do. We refuse to be bystanders, even if we do not know exactly where our actions will lead. This is the kind of passion that sparks romances, wins battles, and drives people to pursue dreams others wouldn’t dare. Belief in ourselves and what is right, catapults us over hurdles and our lives unfold. ‘Life is a sum of all your choices,’ wrote Albert Camus. Large or small, our actions forge our futures, hopefully inspiring others along the way.”
Here were the choices I gave them:
- A military leader
- A former President of the United States
- A great athlete
- The owner of a coffee company
No one selected the correct answer (d), the owner of a coffee company, but (d) was the right answer. The quote is from Howard Shultz’s book, “Onward” and describes his feelings around making a decision to shut his company down for three hours during business hours so they could return to the basics on how to make great coffee.
Who talks about coffee that way? Who uses words like courage, passion, romance and dreams when discussing coffee? The founder and owner of Starbucks, that’s who.
You can tell a lot about how much an individual values something by the way they talk about it. I remember a quote from “Pistol; The Life of Pete Maravich,” where a 7th grade Pete is lying in bed listening to his father talk basketball at the kitchen table in the next room. The boy closes his eyes; the father and friend keep talking, as the narrator states: “I remember drifting off to sleep night after night listening to my father talk about his two favorite things, basketball…and me.”
God please keep me from ever trivializing life. Forgive me for failing to recognize the courage, passion, romance, and dreams you have created me to know. May I approach each day as a gift and your purpose for me as a sacred calling. Whatever you call me to, help me to see it as my opportunity to change the world. Amen.