Friday, September 28, 2007

What if..We Recognized the Timing of Opportunities?

“Mom, I know who I want to marry and have babies with when I grow up.” Hannah said.

I paused for a moment of shock as my youngest daughter (who is only six years old) began to pour her heart out about her future plans.
Then, in a calm voice I said “Oh yeah, who is the lucky boy?”

She got a huge smile on her face and mentioned a boy in her class. As the conversation progressed, she talked of being a mom to six kids. I couldn’t believe the next words that came out of my mouth.

“Hannah, do you know where babies come from?” I said hesitantly.

Without blinking an eye, she said “From God.”

“Well, yes, children are a great blessing from God. But it takes a mommy and a daddy to make a baby.” Oh no. I was in trouble!

With a puzzled look on Hannah’s face she says, “What do you mean?”

At that moment, I knew I needed to smoothly transition out of the birds- and-the-bees conversation because her mindset is still too young to comprehend the concepts. Had Hannah been a few years older, it would have been a wonderful, natural conversation. I told Hannah that I would explain in a few years what it meant for a mom and dad to make a baby.

Yikes! I was caught in a moment that I would have loved to have taken advantage of a captive audience, but knew I needed to wait until a more opportune time. For one of the few times in my life, an opportunity came too early and now I have to wait.

Often times, we can think of ‘missed opportunities’ as something that happened that will not return. I would like to help expand that thinking and reframe missed opportunities as “misplaced moments.” The timing may be off, but the opportunity could return at a later time.


1. Go with your gut. Pay attention to what your gut is telling you to do or not do in a situation. For some, that ‘gut’ represents a nudging from God.

2. Resist the urge to go with an agenda to direct a conversation to end a certain way. At that point, it is no longer an opportunity.

3. Obviously, evaluating powerful conversations depends on whether you will see someone again. Opportunities with people in your daily life will almost always resurface at a later time. A one-time business meeting may not present other opportunities if you have not built a connection in that first meeting.

4. Learning to ‘be’ in the moment rather than ‘do’ will almost always lead to other opportunities. You can’t force an opportunity to happen.

1 comment:

Dianne said...

I LOVE this post...thank you!