Sunday, June 18, 2006

In the Footsteps of My Father

I was a pretty independent minded child. I loved my parents, but I really wanted to have my own identity. Since I was small I heard how much I was like my father, in appearance and mannerisms. If you asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, the answer changed frequently, but the unspoken answer in my head was, "Not a trainer like my dad." My father has been a professional trainer for all of my life. He is good at what he does.

In college, I studied computer science. I got a job working for a small company working on a software application for processing automobile loans. When the lead programmer left the state, the software was getting long in the tooth and was in need of a complete rewrite on a new platform. The company decided to outsource the future development of their product to a consultant and I was out on the street looking for a new job. I was still a student and I scanned the on-campus job listings.

The only job that looked remotely interesting (and reasonably well paying) was a job in the computer training department. I landed the job and really clicked with it. I got good reviews as a teacher and I took on more and more responsibility in the department. Eventually, a full-time position was created in the department and I was hired to fill it. I'm still working there to this day.

So here I am, doing the one thing that I said that I would never do. I'm a trainer. And I love it. Sometimes it creeps me out how much I talk like my dad when I speak in public. It turns out that I inherited a lot of the same gifts and quirks that he has. This is not the direction I ever thought that I would head, but it is working out remarkably well.

I have more than one Father. I sometimes wonder what traits I inherited from my other Father. Is there an invisible hand guiding me to be like him without my full cooperation? Are these the "tentacles of Divine Providence" reaching out to me and pulling me back into the presence of God?

If so, I am grateful. I'd be very happy to be like both of my fathers.


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