I awoke this Monday morning with a bad case of the cold sweats. Now for my longtime friends, no, Im not having a flashback, nor am I recovering from a bad weekend of imbibing. (For the record, its been 40 years since Ive lived wasted days and wasted night.) PTL. Nor were my cold sweats because I was going to write my very first blog today. (For you professional bloggers, be gentle with me, its my very first time.)
No, to be candid my apprehensions I believe was because I spent my first weekend at home in three months and I was able to watch all the weekend news shows with the talking heads speculating about all the potential candidates that were testing the waters, going to Iowa, writing a book or formally announcing their candidacy. It was open hunting season with the eternal question, How prepared is he or she for the demands, the rigors, the pressures of the office? This morning with President Obama making his announcement, they reloaded and took aim on him. What kind of President has he been these years? Was he ready? Was he prepared? And of course there was the ever-ridiculous statement, We dont even know where he was born.
Through the years it has been one of my privileges to influence and mentor a lot of young men and women. One of my favorite topics is The Future Belongs to Those Who are Prepared. With any good study its crucial to know the basic meaning and origin of key words. The word prepared comes from the Latin word paro that carries three meanings:
- To be pointed in the right direction
- To be made complete
- To be equipped for battle
So, if youre being stirred by a dream and you want to do something big and bold ask yourself three questions:
Am I going in the right direction? I can tell your future, I know where youll be in five years. Youll be five years further down the same road and the same direction youre traveling in right now. Seriously, are you headed in the right direction?
Have I been made complete? One of my all time favorite quotes by St. Augustine is, My heart is restless, O Lord, until I find rest in You.
Am I equipped for battle? To be candid, it seemed as though some of the candidates were more concerned with increasing their exposure, which enhances their conference speaking fees or they were desirous to sell a book, than running for office. Others had a lot of potential but left you wondering, what have they actually done? I remember thinking, Man, that dude needs Preparation H. He needs to start preparing in a hurry. So Mr. or Mrs. Candidate, promise yourself and me, if you want my vote, prepare thyself. Serve your country, wear her cloth in battle, start a company, roll up your sleeves and make a difference in your city. Do something that prepares you to lead. Henry Ford was right, you build a reputation not by what youre going to do, but by what youre doing and what youve already done.