Connecting the Dots

Posted on February 25, 2010

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Where do I even start?

Clearly, the stars are aligned, and only God in Heaven could be responsible for that.  What I mean exactly is that despite the horrible predicament I have found myself in, God has put the right people in my life to seek advice from, and He even sent me little messages through a few shows today.

Recently, a woman I was speaking with via email called me stupid. This woman in authority pegged me as a certain type of person (and not a good kind….) and was convinced after one email that I had a heart problem. I was truly hurt and confused. While these offenses seem little, in the scheme of the situation, they were painful for me to endure.

I won’t get lost in the details explaining the situation, but I will say this woman held enough power to make things very difficult in my life if she decided she didn’t like me. And she definitely did not like me. In the most respectful way possible, I tried to apologize for anything I did that might have come off offensive, all the while trying to hold onto the little dignity I had left. I defended myself. This made matters only worse. Eventually, I let go of the conversation, and gave up. The situation I decided was not worth more arguing with someone non-negotiable.

The next day, I was nonchalantly flipping through channels and came across a Seventh Heaven re-run. Wasn’t particularly a huge fan of the show, but I left it on. In the episode, Ruthie, the youngest child, was called stupid by her teacher. The irony hit me like crap hitting a fan. A reminder that she, too, was wronged by people who hold authorial positions, who demand respect but don’t know how to give it to others.

Since I’ve had more than too much time to mull over the past events, the email conversations that ensued, the harsh words and the resulting tears, the thought of failure taking over my mind, and then the thought pushing away that terrible feeling, I suddenly prayed and asked God for the right person to talk to about the situation. Someone unbiased, someone rational, someone I trusted, a person with a good head on their shoulders. And then the name popped into my mind. I got to talk that girl tonight, and I couldn’t have asked for a greater gift. She was the encouraging, rational mind I needed advice from. I could feel the burden slipping off my shoulder when I hung up the phone.

Before I had made this phone call, I was on the Internet, casually browsing for a little inspiration to encourage my spirits. I came across a page containing the speech that Steve Jobs delivered at a university commencement.* I didn’t know if I would read the whole speech or not, but once I started, I couldn’t stop reading. It was the story of a man who went through some painful times, dealing with failure and rejection; yet he took those situations and ended in a better place than when he started. He looked back and was able to see there was a plan–he connected the dots–as he liked to put it.

What an encouragement to know that these really bad times, maybe like the one I’m currently going through, are dots purposefully placed in our lives. And through time, they’re forming a line, later for us to reconnect.

*As much as I enjoy the journey, I can’t wait to look back and connect my dots. If you’d like to be inspired as well, go to this link and read his speech: http://news.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.html.

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Posted in: Personal