When someone believes in something, they fall somewhere on the What Happens Continuum. On one end, there are those who believe “Everything happens for a reason.” At the other end, they vehemently hold the belief, “There is no destiny, only chance.” In between? “Is it a coincidence or a clue?” The ultimate truth has more to do with an intersection of passion than reason.
On January 30th, 2009, Max was in sixth grade. His passion? Music. Eleven year-old Alex had a flair for theater. Isabella was dipping her nine year-old toes into ballet. On the same day Dallas schools closed for teacher service-training. On impulse, we turned the family car into the Booker T. Washington High School parking lot. We knew very little about the arts magnet school and thought we would, “Just look around.”
A family unit, walking into unfamiliar territory has a certain look about it. All eyes are a little wider and heads are on a swivel. At that exact moment a man approaching his retirement years was passing through the lobby. Clearly he was headed for something else but the gaggle of Poscentes compelled him to extend assistance. “May I help you find who you’re looking for?”
“Actually, we were just driving by and wanted to show our musician son the High School he said he wants to go to.”
“What grade are you in son?”
“Sixth grade,” said Max.
“Wow, you like to plan ahead. Why don’t I take you on a little tour before I head off to my meeting.”
Thus began an intersection of passion(s). Bob Marshall, our overqualified ‘tour guide,’ eventually, and humbly revealed he was the past Chairman of Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts Advisory Board. His corporate successes backed up his passion for the arts and ‘Booker T.’
A couple of years later, out of 86 guitar player auditions, Max was one of the five selected. The next year, his sister, Alex auditioned and was chosen for the Theater Cluster. Last week, their youngest sister, Isabella found out she was one of 50 bound for Booker T. out of 200-plus talented dancers across the Dallas metroplex.
We reached out to Bob to let him know Isabella’s good news plus the question if Booker T had ever had three siblings attending the school at the same time. In his reply he mentioned, “(intersecting with your family was) probably one of my greatest and most cherished ‘opportunities.’” He also wrote, “… the question of how "things" happen in this world - fate, luck or an opportunity simply borne out of participating in life. Whatever - it is wonderful when it happens.”
If you are wanting to foster a hand of fate or luck – lead with your passion. Wide-eyed and curious, pass through the next door you find. Its in those moments you will intersect with others following their passion.
Isn’t it wonderful when passion happens!