Sunday, March 20, 2011

patience

I once heard the quote that a sign of maturity is being able to delay gratification. I think that means that a sign of maturity is having patience. If that is so, then it is official - I am NOT mature. It was way back in October that I found out I had been nominated for the list of potential candidates for President of Concordia University, St. Paul. That list was whittled down to 13, then 6, then 5 and then 3. Now here I am waiting for my final set of interviews tomorrow, and I wish it was here already. Over the past few weeks I have mentioned to many people that I am ready for this to be over. The anxiousness, the stress, the waiting, and the anticipation (did I mention the fear?) of what might happen has consumed my life. But I am comfortable with all this - here's why...
  • this is a big deal - my wife told me the other night this is perhaps the biggest thing in my life up to this point (other than my marriage to her). It is natural to have these feelings. If I didn't something would be wrong.
  • I decided several months ago that Iw as going to give this 125% of my energy. If I gave less, not only would I be cheating myself, but I would be cheating Concordia St. Paul. That extra energy has created a little more stress.
  • I see this process as a time of growth - a time for me to stretch and build my own leadership capacity. That stretching is starting to hurt - but that is what good exercise does.
  • someone asked me if I was ready to be a college president. I don't think anyone is ever ready for such a position unless they have done it before. The unknown of what this job might entail really does scare me.
  • it's the unknown that creates stress - I KNOW Concordia University Texas - I am comfortable there and know my role and place. Concordia St. Paul is an unknown that is still unfamiliar. As I walked the campus yesterday, I could see myself there, but also felt like a stranger.

All that being said, I also know that this is a process that is directed by God - he knows the plans he has for me...he knows the future for Concordia University St. Paul...my life is in his hands...he promises ot walk through the fires and waters with me...and he is my God. I trust in that - I trust the calling process - I trust that whatever happens is best for me and my wife - and best for the Kingdom of God. That in itself can give me patience. So I pray the prayer I learned a long time ago...God give me patience, and I want it right now!

3 comments:

amar rama said...

Way to lead with honesty Don! This honesty and vulnerability is as much as a mark of leadership as struggling with patience is. This is an incredible opportunity for all involved. Will be praying and eager to hear the outcome!

Carrie said...

I haven't been reading this as often as I should have and I just got caught up! Thanks for the scoop and for sharing what you're going through. I empathize and appreciated the maturity (ha!) of your words.

Sunny said...

Hi Don, you are most favorite college dean, okay my only college Dean and to think you might be leaving makes me sad. :( I enjoy reading the wisdom and maturity of your blogs and know that Christ will not just point you in the direction He wants you to go but He will hold your hand the entire way! Thank you for being the most amazing leader to me and for being a great example of courage, as you take this leap of faith. Sunny