During a meeting this week my mentor mentioned something that got me to thinking. He explained that while he was in Jr. High School, lockers were assigned alphabetically. The names P-S were in his group. To date, he is still friends with those guys & best friends with one of them. They were forced to associate because of random locker assignments. Did it end with just a mere friendship over unlocking a lock? There were kindred spirits at play as well. Both guys, Kirk Porter & Raffaele Recchia were entrepreneurs. From buying candy in bulk & selling it at school, to buying old cars that would be used in movies, they were always looking at alternative income sources. Both were from Michigan & if I’m not mistaken, Kirk’s dad was transferred to the General Motors plant in Arlington, Texas. Does the theory of forced associations end in Jr. High? The cool part is that it actually affected my life.
Kirk marries a Texan girl, Nicole. They start a family, build a house in Ovilla, Tx, & attend The Oaks Fellowship in Red Oak. In 2004, I moved from Louisiana to Texas. At the time of my move, I knew one family in Texas. One. In an attempt to find an awesome youth group for my son, Bryce, we began attending The Oaks. There were three classes suggested that all newcomers, who are interested in leadership positions at The Oaks, attend. One was a 13 week course, Discovering Your Purpose. Time progressed, & during the course of attending church on Sunday & Wednesday, my sphere of knowing only one family increased & I had made several friends. Who do you think was taking that same class? Kirk & Nicole Porter. To this day, I remember our last class. An assignment was given to us to stand up in front of the class, read our spiritual gifts test results, match it to our passion & explain how the intertwining of each would place us in a ministry. I still have that paperwork & love to read over it again & again as a reminder of how far my journey has evolved. Many people spoke of teaching Sunday School, being involved in Missions, & various other awesome ministries.
I will never forget the look on the faces of people as I stated mine. My bold & confident speech went like this, “My spiritual gifts are administration & discernment. Prophecy & prayer are also among the highest scores. My passion is for single parents. If you were to cut my heart open, you would find that each beat would be beating for a single parent. My determined purpose is to fill stadiums of single adults, both nationally and internationally, instructing, equipping & empowering them how to survive as a single adult.” By this time, jaws dropped & stares intensified! I continued, “I want single adults to know they are not alone & do not have to feel alienated in what could be the greatest season of their lives.” I thanked everyone & sat down.
Kirk presented for he & Nicole. He mentioned that they were interested in missions, street evangelism, church planting. Because of his background, he wanted to be the best dad & husband he could be. It was emotional for him, & became emotional for us as well. Thirteen weeks of forced associations, learning together, created a bond. We wanted what everyone wanted. We encouraged & supported each other to be the best at where their passion would lead them.
Did the theory of forced associations end at a required class? Well, no! Kirk & Nicole became Small Group Directors & I became the Singles Director. Because of our church leadership structure & the fact that I taught a Small Group…we were “forced” to interact on a regular basis. Mutual respect was established, as well as friendship. In 2006 Raffaele entered the scene again. I love him for being the faithful friend he is & I am forever grateful for forced associations! Raffaele had discussed with the Porters’ about this internet business he was doing. He sent info to them in the form of audio recordings. He then came from Michigan to Texas for a visit. On the last day of this visit, being pressed by Kirk, he explained the business to them. Being the ambitious people they are, Kirk & Nicole soared immediately! Shortly after becoming biz partners with Raffaele, they exposed me to the opportunity. We have been partners since September 2006 & my life has forever changed. You see…I moved from Louisiana because I was looking for something different. In 2003 I had been given the book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki, by the one and only person I knew in Texas. Imagine that! See…..success occurs when preparation & opportunity meet. Lease Purchase Real Estate was the catalyst for me, a single mom, to forever leave behind my Louisiana family & life-long friends, walk away from a lifetime nursing career & move to a state knowing only one family. God knew all along that the theory of forced associations would come into play. I call it divine appointments, divine connections & supernatural relationships!
Bible scholars see thin, scarlet threads intricately woven throughout the Bible. Read how a harlot saving a disciple is mentioned in the Hebrews “Hero Hall of Faith.” How a widow clinging to her mother in law, gleaning wheat of a prominent man, led the lineage of Jesus. Joseph who being sold into slavery, put into prison, & interpreting dreams of a King, led to saving his family & the nation. Many times forced associations aren’t pleasant, but the reward is beyond description.
At this point, I encourage you to look deeply at the associations in your life. Are they helping you move closer to or further away from your passion & purpose? In the past several years, I have shed lots of weight. Weight in the form of associations with people who do not contribute to my purpose in life. People, who if allowed, would have sucked the life out of me. Does this sound cruel to you? It may, but my heart continues to beat for single adults & there are stadiums to fill. Because of other professional associations I have submitted to, I can show them how they can not just merely survive, but thrive in a community as a single adult, while paying the gift of life forward . My life purpose is to hear amazing words from my Father, not hang my head in regrets because I neglected to embrace the thin scarlet threads He has woven in my life.
I am eternally grateful for Kirk & Nicole Porter. I have watched Kirk, not only be an amazing dad & husband, but be a mentor to men across the globe, encouraging them to do the same. Nicole is a beautiful, amazing women of strength & influence. They are my best friends, yet I continually allow them to be my mentors. Who knew alpha-assigning lockers would lead to associating with world leaders, building successful communities, transforming so many lives, creating so many friendships & embracing so many dreams? Only Jehovah God Almighty! In February 2007, during a Leadership Convention held in the St. Louis Ram Stadium, Nicole turned to me & said, “Here’s your stadium!” To this moment, it brings tears to my eyes knowing at any moment I could have missed this opportunity.
Let me ask you a question? Who in your life could have such an impact? Life is precious & I urge you not to waste another second until you find them. But … I will push one step further & encourage YOU to be that person to someone!