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Looking InMost people who know me well would most likely agree that over the past several years I have had more than my share of challenges. A few days ago I was driving my truck on a local road with very little traffic. Since I did not have to be as focused, or frustrated, on the other vehicles and their drivers, I was afforded the luxury to think about several problems from a detached point of view (you could call it thinking outside the truck). As I analyzed each problem I came to realize that I could make a choice between continuing to fight the battles, which takes a lot of energy, or accept them for what they are and just enjoy living in the moment. Through these series of thoughts I experienced a paradigm shift. I was looking into the window of my life with a tangle of vines obscuring the view but I was also seeing the challenges in a new light. The problems are still complex, with some more painful than others, and some don’t seem to have an easy solution.

I work in a job where I am constantly solving problems. I have been blessed with the ability to take an idea sketched on a napkin and turn it into a machine. For over 32 years I have worked as a draftsman and mechanical designer. During this time I have worked on the cutting edge of science and have helped design machines to allow scientists to conduct experiments that at one time were impossible. At the same time I have always put my family before my job but due to this type of work, at times it is impossible not to think about a challenging design after I have left work for the day.

As a designer it is important to be able to work with people who each have their area of expertise. I take interpersonal relationships very seriously. I absolutely despise conflict and the drama that comes along for the ride. I will go to great lengths to avoid an argument. I know for a fact that this is a character trait that is wired into my very being. When I find myself in the middle of conflict, it becomes a challenge for my brain to find a solution that restores peace. But I am learning that some problems cannot be solved no matter how much I try to fix them. At some point I have to let go and trust God to work through the heart of others, and myself, to repair a broken relationship. I am learning that only when I let go can I find peace and happiness.