American essayist, philosopher, and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once said "Each man has his own vocation; his talent is his call. There is one direction in which all space is open to him."
The substance of this quote can apply to nearly any aspect of life and in any profession. Doctors, lawyers, engineers, barbers, sports whatever the profession, an individual realizes they have some degree of talent and then work to develop their skill set. The athlete who works hard becomes a world famous player and the best in his sport. The doctor who works hard becomes a world renowned surgeon.
Lebron James, Michael Jordan, Johnny Cochran.............. what do they all have in common? All had talent and developed it to be successful. Far more important than developing their talent is the fact that they were fortunate enough to not get in their own way while developing that talent.
What do I mean by this? Far too many times we have witnessed people who have talents one can only dream of; yet they are unable to get out of the way to allow the talent to blossom.
Thunder Collins was a University of Nebraska running back. As a high school senior he rushed for over 1,110 yards. He was a Junior College All American and was recruited by several large universities.
Today, Thunder Collins is a convicted killer sentenced to life in prison with an additional 110 years for other counts. Thunder Collins provides a prime example of how we get in the way of our talents and close the space that Emerson spoke of.
Thunder Collins (Univ of Nebraska), Lawrence Phillips (Univ of Nebraska), Cecil Collins (LSU), and Maurice Clarett (Ohio State) are all bad exmaples of young black men with endless potential and are all currently incarcerated. Why is this?
If a man’s talent is his calling, why are their life changing obstacles placed before him that prevent him from reaching his calling?