She tripped walking to the stage. The red and yellow fisher price record player was just big enough to make her already awkward steps, even more so.

Not a great start.

Still, she smiled. She turned the knob to wind the player. “tick tick tick” “raaaaaatchet” and then placing it as near the microphone as possible, she put on the plastic disc that was her “back up band.”

The music box tinkled out ” Jack and Jill” and her tiny, first grade voice joined in. She sang with the clinker notes and tiny voice you would expect. Then, smiling like an Idol finalist, she bowed and walked off stage to the applause of her school.

There may have been snickers. There may have been laughs. But, she never heard them. For that moment, she was a star. She’d performed in front of her whole school, and could see her parents smiling at the back of the gym.

That was all that mattered.

I know it did, because “she” was me. I remember being so excited to sing. I remember practicing so much my hand hurt from winding that record player. I remember feeling afraid to walk out on that stage and I remember a moment that I considered running off the stage right before I started that record.

Today, I’m yet again stepping out. I feel about as prepared as I was on that day in first grade. My tools feel just about as clunky, outdated and immature as that fisher price record player. I feel nervous, excited and unsure what to expect.

As I sit on a plane, flying to Denver to meet with staff @MOPS International, to better understand the structure and function of each one’s role so I can better serve as a Board member, I remember that first grader.

if she could do that, I can do this. So, I will.

“tick tick tick” “raaaaatchet.” That’s the sound of me winding up the skill set I have preparing to use them in a new setting. A Board member.

Dear Lord, I love you and thank you for calling me to serve MOPS International as a Board member. please prepare me and fill me- in your name I pray- amen