I traveled to Dallas, TX, for the annual Association of Professional Chaplains conference recently. However, not only did I attend but I presented one of the workshops there. Full of anxiety due to this being my first national presentation, I arrived early to the room to set it up and to test the audio equipment with the audio team, who assured me they would be in the hall right outside if I had any difficulties. Well, during the workshop, a continuous beeping starts occurring, which I cannot stop. Interrupting the presentation, I step out into the hallway for assistance—microphone still attached to my blouse—but find no one there. Releasing my frustrations quietly, I scurry down the hall. Suddenly, one of my workshop attendees catches up with me, saying, “I’ll go find someone, and your microphone is still on!”
We all have these moments where we want to crawl beneath the table and never show our faces again. While they are embarrassing ones, do you know what I call them? Learning experiences—moments that shape and mold us personally and professionally to better define our knowledge, skills, character, and even attitude. As we continue to endure challenges both professionally and personally, may the Potter continue to use learning experiences (not necessarily embarrassing ones!) to form us in His image and in relation to Him.