John and the Volcano
- Keeping promises while facing challenges or the temptation of an easier path
- Seeing something through to the end and keeping the right attitude about it
- Honoring my responsibilities with diligence, even when it requires sacrifice
In 2010, I was invited to travel to Uganda to meet with a group of local community leaders. I was asked to be one of the “featured speakers” at a leadership event that was bringing together individuals from all over Uganda. Many of the attendees would travel for days by foot to attend this meeting. I was honored by the invitation and I gladly accepted it.
I got my presentation ready for the leaders and I prepared to leave the United States. Unfortunately, just a few days before my planned departure date, something unique happened: a volcano in Iceland erupted, disrupting all travel via Europe. (My travel to Uganda was via Amsterdam.).
At first, it looked like I would have to cancel my presentation. (I couldn’t Skype in to the conference because there wasn’t much electricity where I was headed!) But I could not get over the fact that there would be leaders traveling by foot for days to attend this conference. Surely, I thought, if they were willing to work so hard, and sacrifice so much to be there, as one of the speakers I should be willing to do the same. After all, it was a leadership conference!
So… I stayed up all night working with various airlines and, eventually, I was able to stitch together an itinerary that got me to Uganda. (I had to fly the long way around the planet via Tokyo and Bangkok to get there.) At the end of it all, I was able to make it to the conference and I spent several wonderful days meeting with an amazing group of people. It was a fantastic experience. I hope that the attendees got something out of it because I know it had a deep impact on me.
I am glad that I pushed through and found a way to get to that conference. If I had let the volcano stop me, I would have missed an incredible opportunity. Instead, I was able to travel to Uganda. I made many new friends, learned a lot, and was changed for the better in the process.
The Funds For Learning GuideMark Commitment is about facing challenges and not backing down even if it might be easier to quit or take a different path. For our school clients, we make a promise to help them get funding for their Internet access. There are many times that it is challenging, frustrating, and downright “impossible”. But when we stay committed to the course, and do our best to honor our commitments, it is amazing what can happen.
How are you honoring your commitments today?
Key words and phrases
Sticking with it; Faithfulness; Worthy of trust; Diligent and reliable; Dedication to a pledge; Dependable Sacrifice to keep a promise; Taking ownership of a situation
Not finishing the job; Undependable; Not worthy of trust; Wishy-washy
GuideMarks – Distinguishing Characteristics of FFL E-rate Guides
Copyright © 2012 Funds For Learning, LLC. About the Funds For Learning GuideMarks.
- May 7, 2012 - Reliability
- May 14, 2012 - Proactive
- May 21, 2012 - Offer No Excuses
- May 28, 2012 - Teamwork
- June 4, 2012 - Thoroughness
- June 11, 2012 - Reinforce the Good
- June 18, 2012 - Your Best Work Forward
- June 25, 2012 - Timeliness
- July 2, 2012 - Focus
- July 9, 2012 - Professionalism
- July 16, 2012 - Solution-Minded
- July 23, 2012 - Work By Design
- July 30, 2012 - Neatness Counts
- August 5, 2012 - Share the Reason
- August 13, 2012 - Understand the Reason
- August 20, 2012 - Intentional Learning
- August 27, 2012 - Calming Presence