Thursday, July 26, 2012

Between a Rock and a Hard Case : the Exciting Conclusion

In case you missed the first or second part of the story, we will wait while you catch up. Seriously, click and it will open a new window leaving this one patiently awaiting your return.

Told you we'd wait....

Now that you're all caught up, we'll take another look at our hero. He's just been offered a job in IT at an increase in his salary and the starting day is creeping up on him. Lost in the giddiness of a new job were the thoughts of inadequacies, the questions of why he hadn't been offered the job in the first place, and the conversations with God that went something like this.

God, why did you wait so long? Did I not pray long enough? Did I not pray hard enough? Did you question my desire, my resolve?

Fact is I had questioned if God had my back. I stopped listening for the answers.

Fast forward to the first day on the job.

I was slated to work in two offices. The first office was the beginning part of the day and involved working in a role supporting administrative staff and performing more administrative duties. I answered phones and opened letters and was generally bored out of my mind. Only the few phone calls that were mindless in nature. Every once in a while some excitement would loom. The calls from the inmates who we're calling the Governor to determine the status of their appeal.

We'd get calls from the Mental Health facility, you know the psychiatric hospital. I swear their sign out front said "people committed to excellence" which was probably some rah-rah for the employees, but poorly thought through (or very well thought through) and the nature of those conversations was always "interesting."

We had seemingly normal people call in whose judgement would later be called into question. I remember a very well spoken woman who called our office looking for the fax number of her Senator. After giving her the number, I politely asked if she would like the fax number of the other Senator in Marylnd. What followed was a brief moment of silence followed by excited exclamation "we got TWO senators from Maryland???"

If it weren't for the second part of the day, I might have quit.

Now, I was hot spit when it came to personal computers and nobody was going to tell me any different. I knew I had a few hours of learning before I had mastered the world of servers.

Humility it's the gift that God offers those who don't think they need it. Those of you thinking you don't need it, yeah... Those of us who've think we've learned it, yeah. Truly the people who have it are the people who seek it. Oh, and be thankful it isn't the lesson of Patience.

I got a heavy dose of it. I was working with some bright people. One of the first people I met was a guy who we'll call Rick. I got to follow Rick around like a loyal puppy for a few weeks. Rick was sharp, but more importantly he understood people and he was one of those people that sought Humility. One of the best lessons I learned from Rick was when he said, "you don't have to know the answer... you just have to convey that the problem is now your problem and the most important thing in your world."

He was right. People take for granted your knowledge, but your desire for a solution to their problem is always welcome. Rick was the guy who got "my job."

Dose of Reality #1: I wasn't ready to do Rick's job. What an eye opener, God. You knew me...enough to know I hadn't a clue.

Did I mention Dose of Reality #2? Rick talked about God's influence on his career...ZING!

I get it God, I'll stop doubting.

One of the saddest days of my career were when Rick left to enjoy other career opportunities. I had lost an every day mentor and friend. After an ill fated replacement came and went, I was offered the job that I had initially applied for, not received, been trained for, and at which I was successful.

One of the happiest days of my career was on the day after being told I was being let go (service in any political arena during a change of administration can be like that) was going to my shortest interview, ever. I believe it went something like this:

Jim (a different one): Hi, I'm Jim.

Me: Hi.

Jim: I talked to Rick, when can you start.

Partial credit goes to Rick on that one. Since he'd likely not accept it, we'll just call that a God "showing off" moment.



  1. I think we all need a 'Rick' in our lives. Mine helped get me my current job, and I couldn't be happier.

  2. Jim wasn't bad either. In case that didn't come through in the story.

  3. Chubby ChatterboxJuly 26, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Good post. I didn't get the feeling that Jim was bad. I have a Jim in my life--my wife. She gives me all the luck I need by kicking me in the ass and getting me to challenge myself.

  4. Alls well that ends well. Thanks for sharing mate. You are right, those who doin't think they need humility are the ones who need it most.

  5. Thanks Chubby. My wife is a good motivation, I mean motivator.

  6. Indeed, humility is common like common sense, which is to say it's not.

  7. I have a feeling I've missed out on something great here. Please continue to wait on me to read the first and second part. Wait, I said!

  8. Waiting.... don't make me turn blue....

  9. Oh my should I say God or should I not hmmmmmmmm ok I am going with not...........
    still a bloody funny story it was ment to be funny wasn't it or is it just me that thought it was funny or maybe it is the light headness that I am feel, whichever I still got a laugh............

  10. I'm glad you enjoyed the story. My life is in general comedic, but on this occasion it might have been all the cough syrup, lol.

  11. Still waiting....getting rather blue.




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