In my journey this last year, I am finding that God is very much ALIVE. His Word says that He is, but I was led to believe that He was only alive in the people in my circle. The people who fellowshipped as I did. The people who believed as I did. If they weren't attending where I/We went, did not walk in the faith and truth I/We saw, then they really didn't "have the truth" and consequently, really didn't love God because otherwise they would see things as I/We saw them.
But God is everywhere!!! When you are in tune with Him, you will be amazed at how He shows himself! I am frequently reminded of this, nearly if not literally every day. It blows me away.
Today was my monthly AAPC Class [American Academy of Professional Coders]. I have been a member and attended since 2010 when I lost my job and decided to put forth more effort to make connections with others out in the Medical Field, perform speaking engagements to educate people and share information from my years of experience and knowledge that doesn't get relayed to help people navigate the industry, create strategic business partners to refer to and work with, develop an online presence for my business, and make sure that I continued to learn more about my industry. I am not a certified professional coder, but I choose to attend their monthly meetings and learn what I can from the speakers. This was one way that I felt I should spend my time, energy and money. I was a guest speaker January 2012 and spoke on Credentialing at the AAPC Fort Worth Chapter. Last month, I was a participant and hosted a Round Table Discussion and Learning Event at the AAPC Fort Worth Chapter on Medical Billing. It has provided me many opportunities to make other connections and to meet some really nice people.
I was sort of dreading going to class today because it was "on a Saturday" and I have so much that needs to get done right now and in many ways, am stressing about all the projects. I felt that my day was going to be totally shot by the time I had to leave for class, attending a longer than normal class session, and then get home early to mid afternoon. I also knew that I wanted to spend a little bit of time out in the pool and that to achieve some work and not have the day utterly spent, I was going to have to stay focused and be motivated. I contemplated skipping out on the class today...more than once. In the end, I went, and was frustrated because in route, I35 north had construction and I wasn't making good time. Then on I30 west, it was traffic due to both an event and construction. I arrived 20 minutes late. And then, the room that the email blast provided as to where the class was going to be held, it was not in that room. I get very peeved with myself when I am late, even if it is nobody's fault but my own, I still do it. I chided myself and said I should have just stayed home. I pretty much was dragging myself into class.
The speaker today was Dr. Walid Saade, a local doctor in the Fort Worth area, speaking on Leadership. I needed to hear what he had to say. It wasn't that his material was new to me. If you know me well, you know I have attended several leadership seminars and conferences over the last few years. Additionally, I follow several leadership speakers blogs, listen to leadership podcasts, have a bookcase full of material produced by many well known authors that I am continually reading and re-reading.
I don't know if the class got started on time or not...the guy in front of me [who I later learned was his brother] was videoing on his iPhone and when I noticed this a few minutes after sitting down, it was at 11 minutes. Doesn't mean he started it at the beginning, but in all likelihood, I probably didn't miss too much. He shared a story of a patient who was having health issues because of her amount of alcohol intake. He shared that he told her that he would love her anyway and be her doctor even if she continued to drink the amount she was drinking. He shared that she was killed in a car wreck, but it wasn't due to drinking. She had quit after he shared with her his story, why he was concerned about her and what he had seen in other patients. He shared a poem that he wrote about her and that was read at her funeral.
It wasn't what he said or how he said it, it was the message of love, service and care. It was the simple fact that he was living out what he believed, not just in his talk but in his walk. It was the fact that God used him in my life today as he quoted scripture without referencing the bible, yet clearly speaking of biblical principals, and sharing the truth that makes each of us successful.
But today, I needed to be reminded even beyond that why leadership matters. I needed to be reminded that it takes time, lots of time. You have to be patient. I needed to remember that leaders love people. They impact lives. They lead with ethics, principals, and purpose. They have a vision and stay focused. The essence of leadership is character. Leadership is your ability to boldly move your team forward, not for your benefit but for theirs, with a commitment to excellence and results. I needed to be reminded that to be a leader, you have to aspire to lead.
Why? Because in the midst of the drama in various organizations, attitudes in team members at clients offices, facing extreme exhaustion due to the extra hours having to be put in to achieve results, the overwhelming amount of deadlines and intense projects on my plate, the stressful circumstances these situations are creating, the results of counseling and working through my past, the daily grind that is wearing me down; I was wearing thin in my passion for what I do...why I do it...and how to keep on doing it. I needed today. God knew I needed today. He sent Dr. Saade to provide me the reminders why leadership is important and the difference between leading and leaders.
But it doesn't stop there. God had more for me.
I went to Thank Dr. Saade. I let him know that I appreciate him taking the time to share thoughts. He thanked me for thanking him. He then asked me what I do. I wasn't there to sell myself, I was in a student mode, learning mode, and a heart of gratitude, so I pretty much just brushed him off and told him he could have my business card if he wanted my contact information. I ignored his question and went on to ask if he had attended various leadership events and seminars I had. He was amazed when he learned that we had read a lot of the same books, attended a lot of the same conferences, and our desire was the same. He told me he wanted to do lunch and talk more. He stated he wants to go with me to one of the next leadership events. He asked me again what I did and I realized I couldn't be rude, I had to answer and so I told him I was the owner of a Medical Billing Agency that provides Medical Billing, Training, Accounting and Credentialing Services. He then was impressed and said we seriously need to talk. He said, I am going to text you right now so that you have my phone number. Let me know what your schedule is like as I want to do lunch in the next week or two.
I am not one to get too excited about these types of things because I have been given so much fluff and hot air by people who make promises that I hate to get my hopes up. Not that I thought he was a man that wouldn't keep his word, he didn't strike me like that after his two hour talk. I just was guarded because of the number of times people make promises and don't keep them, especially in my industry. On top of the fact, what doctor texts you his personal cell phone? They typically keep this private.
When I got home I texted him a few dates that I would be available to meet and talk. I then spent some time and looked him up on line. He is a Family Medicine Doctor and the COO of a local major urgent care facility with multiple locations in the DFW Area. He also has a website for his leadership program, Aspire to Lead [you can read and subscribe here at www.aspiretolead.net]. This connection was God given and it is for a reason. I believe it will be more than just to light a fire in me again for the passion at what I do. I believe God has a plan. More of a plan and He will reveal it in His time.
These types of "God Stories" only make me wish I had seen God working in my life before as I do now. I wish I had been in tune to His ways. I wish I had not second guessed myself about how He leads. I wish I had believed that He is Alive as I believe and see Him Alive now!