Do You Have a Dream?

As cliche’ as the questions is, it was asked of me in my reading. Right now, I have the pleasure of reading John C. Maxwell’s book The 21 Most Powerful Minutes in a Leader’s Day. Day by day it asks provoking questions 5 days a week. Today, I am on Day 1 Week 3. It explains that a leader needs 3 things to prepare them:

  1. Time to Mature
  2. Trials to Strengthen
  3. God to Bless

As the thought of the day: “It’s not the dream of a lifetime; It’s the dream that takes a lifetime”, resonates in my mind, I think of what my dream is. The last question of the day asks, “Are you willing to pay the price to accomplish your dream?

For many people influence me and many people I influence in my life, most of them see something in me that for a long time I couldn’t see in myself. That’s because it takes time to mature. The trials that have strengthened me, (although mostly self-induced) had not taken place or had not run their course. I think life will continue to challenge us. The first time I read through those three things I thought I could do nothing about the 3rd and therefore I had no control over my dreams(regardless of whether or not I know what they are). However, the last few times I read through them I realized, that God wants to bless me. Because of the things I have done to myself, I have distanced myself from him. By resetting my moral compass to align with his, I can by blessed by God’s grace and that will in turn influence the trials and the time it takes to mature. They all work hand in hand.

That leaves one question. I warn you… it’s a biggie. WHAT IS MY DREAM? My priorities are somewhat inline. For what? I don’t know, exactly. Therefore, I must determine what my dream is and then let nothing stand in my way. Not even myself.

Out and About

feb32008Getting stuck in the house on a Saturday or a Sunday Morning absolutely kills me. It makes Gabby particularly cranky too. A week or so ago We decide to take the whole family for a walk. It was nice to see this strange phenomenon called…OUTSIDE!
Grovetown is a very beautiful place with lots to do for an outdoorsy person like myself. We never really get out to take it all in though. This Sunday was different. Even Amber tagged along. From the fresh air to the chance finding of an arrowhead, the Euchee Creek Trail is a great little getaway. Gabby and I even showed Amber where to find “Secret Lake”. Gabby had a blast on our little hike. It was all we could do to keep her from spilling over the rails into the swampy underbrush that runs along side the creek. All in all it was a great time and although it only last an hour in the present, it will be immortal in my memories and thoughts.

Just Go With It

In the last few weeks, something interrupted my flow. Not sure what the heck was going on. I found myself wondering how I would continue doing my job well enough to satisfy me. I was feeling pretty empty and no gas stations in sight.

There has been a lot going on. The mortgage industry has flipped upside down. My goals at work changed. People I worked with suddenly moved on. Some temporarily. Some, not so temporarily. I decided to change how I do my Bible study. If that wasn’t enough, I decided to speak my mind about the changes at work to my boss.

With what I do, lending is only a part of my role. A big part. To give you an idea how this industry can be awesome and within the same five minutes be so awful, I ‘ll have to share a few thoughts.

All of the clients that had applications in with me wanted to jump ship because mortgage rates fell through the floor. With good conscience, I let them go. I have always said, “if it’s better, it’s better.” Usually the relationship I create with people is enough to keep my loan “better” than the next guys, but let’s face it. Would you do a loan with your mother if someone would offer you 2% lower for the same term? Right. I know. I’d let you jump ship too. The good side of that is that when your loan pipeline falls through because of rates, you will attract some new clients. Your goals suffer (along with your paycheck), but life does go on.

Now take into account that my goals for the type of loans changed directions completely. My major focus now is on Small Business and Commercial lending. Going from consumer lending to commercial is like shopping for panty hose at Auto Zone. I have to admit. I am as green as Kermit the Frog’s little….well, finger.

As far as people go that I work with, we are all still getting used to a new Regional Bank Director and a new Sales Leader. They are both new to their positions and care a great deal about winning. That’s the good news. You know that old saying about old dogs and new tricks. It’s tough for people like myself to break from what we know works to try something. Even if it may work better the new way. We still try to get by for a while by fetching the ball they way we always have. It wasn’t working.

Finally, I changed my reading of the good book to night time reading instead of the morning. I did it to make more time in the morning to help with an ever “no-ing” two-year-old in the mornings. I know it sounds small, but when you have relied on that each morning for the last 7 years and it changes, it’s big.

I’d love to tell you that I did some massive sit down and figured it all out. The truth is this. It fell together at the blessing of the Lord. That’s the truth. It was simple (as it usually is). I laid it down and let him pick it up. As soon as I found a new dedication to seek him, my life feels like it is flowing in the right direction again. I know there is give and take in life. I’ve done a lot of taking and a fair share of giving. I have learned one thing from this last few weeks. Some times….You just have to go with it. Sure, salmon swim upstream and make it, but within just a day or two, they die.

Yep. Rolling with the tide feels right. I guess now it just depends on which tied you follow. As for me I will be a fisher of men.