Today is April’s Fool Day. Sometimes the things that happen in life are too bizarre to be called a coincidence. Sometimes life plays a joke on us just to teach us a lesson! Sometimes the events of life are a combination of a bad decision, a bad joke and perhaps irresponsible behavior. I want you to consider the fact that sometimes we just do not know why certain circumstances happen. Regardless of how well educated we are, or how smart we think we are, sometimes a situation arises or things happen in life simply to teach us an important lesson.
A while back, I got a call from my daughter, Esther. She was very upset! She had misplaced a notebook which had all of her important business information. It contained details on all of her business contacts, notes taken on conversations where pricing and products had been discussed, shipping information and much more. It was vital to her business because it contained all of her recent, necessary and important information. She had misplaced it and she was understandably upset.
I can certainly understand that predicament! I have misplaced important documents, myself, so I know the sick feeling that comes with such an experience. That sick feeling is accompanied by the fear that someone may find the confidential information and use it to harm you or your business in some way.
Did I mention that she was really, really upset about losing this notebook?! That would be the understatement of the year! She had torn apart her house, her office, her car; she had looked everywhere she knew to look in order to find the notebook. Then she feared the worst! She feared that it had somehow gotten mixed up with all of the trash that had recently been thrown away. Hours, days, and weeks of work were suddenly gone! As her dad, it was hard to listen to her panic and tears. I could only comfort her by empathizing with her feelings and relating a similar story of my own.
I once took three of my grandchildren to play at a local amusement park called Monkey Joe’s. I had taken my briefcase in with me with all of my important papers, laptop computer and other personal items. When we left that afternoon, I was so focused on getting my grandchildren safely to the car and settled in their seats that I accidentally drove off and left my briefcase sitting in the parking lot of Monkey Joe’s! I didn’t realize it until later that night when I needed something from it. Talk about a sick feeling – I just knew that it was gone for ever! It wasn’t like I had left it inside where it might have been safer. I left it in the parking lot! Since I pride myself on being an efficient person, that realization left me thinking, “What an idiot!!”
I hardly slept at all that night. I got up early and called the next morning, I was told that someone had found it and been kind enough to turn it in to the store management. You can imagine my relief! Although I had experienced a sleepless night, I certainly was grateful to get my briefcase returned intact. Not one thing was missing!
After telling Esther my story, I prayed with her that she would find her notebook and encouraged her to not give up.
Later that afternoon my phone rang and it was my daughter. She had been working with our graphic artist, Pedro Gonzalez. While she was working with him, she noticed that one of her fingernails was broken, which was frustrating because she had just had her nails done a few days earlier and now she would have to go back to have the broken one fixed. As she sat there staring at the broken nail, suddenly she remembered that while at the nail salon, she had been looking through her now missing notebook. Could that be where she had misplaced it? She quickly dialed the number of the salon and was told that they were so happy to hear from her because THEY HAD HER NOTEBOOK! They had wanted to let her know, but did not have her phone number. They were so excited that she had called. But, if you think they were excited, you should have heard Esther’s excitement! What was lost had been found! She immediately went and got it! Whew!
There is nothing like the feeling of finding something that you have lost! I am sure that you have experienced that, too. But, who would have thought the key to unlocking the mystery of the missing notebook would have been a broken fingernail?
So, if a briefcase left in the parking lot of Monkey Joe’s can be returned, and Esther’s notebook could be found in a nail salon, isn’t it good to know that sometimes there are happy endings to hard situations? Isn’t it good to know that something as simple as a broken fingernail could be the thing that triggers your mind to remember where you may have left your missing notebook?
None of us is smart enough to figure out life. None of us knows what is really best for us in the end. We have to move forward, believing that what has taken place is part of the larger story of life. I am so happy that my daughter found her notebook! But, I’m even happier about the fact that whatever happens to us is part of our story and it will simply lead us to the next step.
Stop trying to figure out everything. Have faith that your daily experiences in your business life, your family life and your personal life are leading you somewhere. And, while it is important to be responsible, don’t give up when you make a mistake. You never can tell what may be around the next corner that will lead you to the solution to your problem. Believe that, because it is the truth!
Tip: Sometimes the solution can be found in a broken fingernail!
Have a great week! God bless you!
Dr. Robert A. Rohm