Looking For That Open Door

About the only way I know how to read is when I finish one book, I go right on to the next. In fact, I actually read two books at a time; don’t ask how I manage. This weekend I finished a book from an old cowboy friend and picked up the next from my shelf, Growing Up Colt by former Texas Longhorn Quarterback Colt McCoy and his dad Brad. Not that I’m a Longhorn fan, but rather a fan of Colt.

I think I was meant to pick up this one today. In the first few chapters, Colt talks about the roots his parents laid for him, as he finished at UT and his first start with the Browns. In it he talks about being patient, prepared, and keeping your head on straight. I look forward to rest of the book (30 pages in before I came up for air) and reading thoughts from Colt and his father. What struck me more was the viewpoint of looking for God to open a door after he seemingly closes another in your face. That’s kinda where I’m at in life right now.

This will be my last week at the ranch in Southern Arkansas. Not that I want to leave, but sometimes we have to chose what’s best for us. I hate moving. I hate not being able to settle in one place. But I’m looking for that place that fits me, and I’m waiting on God to open that door. Ranching is my passion, no doubt about that. I’m also passionate about sharing my knowledge and passion with others (hence this blog). But sometimes we take risks, and once in a while those risks come back to bite us. So I find myself “between jobs.”

But I should count my blessings, as well all should. Only God knows where our path will lead us, and it’s not our job to dwell on the past. I want to look for that open door. Where I can make a positive impact in Agriculture, build upon my skills in cattle production, and share my passion with others. I told myself a long time ago I was going to be a cattleman and make a difference, and that’s still where my goals are set. I just have to figure out where that next step will be.

At this point, I may not have the stability in my life some employers are looking for, but I’m working on it. I do have my parents to thank for my good raising. Heck I really ought to thank my dad for putting up with me since my mom passed 5 years ago this week. It’s been a rough road, but I have those principles to lean back on.

In Growing Up Colt, Colt lines out 4 principles his parents raised him by and even though they may not have expressed it, I’m pretty sure my parents gave me the same.

  1. Prepare your children for the path, not the path for your children
  2. Prepare your children to do their best
  3. Prepare your children to be leaders
  4. Prepare your children for opened and closed doors

I may not have kids yet, but can certainly thank my parents for what they gave me. Have you read Growing Up Colt? What did you make of it? I’m just getting started, but look for their to be some good thoughts to ruminate on throughout the book. If you do not yet have a copy, get one.

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him — Hebrews 11:6 (NIV)


  1. Ryan, when I was 23 I flew to southern California for a job interview. Everyone was so nice. It seemed perfect. Just what I was hoping for. I quit my job, packed up my few things and moved. I think I was there a couple of days when the guy who interviewed me told me he couldn't wait to quit because the bosses were such asses. WTH! I just moved cross country for a job and now he tells me. I had even asked him if he would make the move to work there. It was two years of almost torture before I finally came back home to no job and had to move back in with my parents. The humiliation. But he was right. They were not very nice men and I didn't want that rubbing off on me.

    Anyway, this is a long way of saying when you are young you need to take these chances. Sometimes they do not pay off as hoped. But, when you're young you bounce when you hit the ground. As you get older? Not so much. My next job was with an old co-worker who I didn't like very much but, he had freelance work for me and I wasn't too proud. We ended up leaving that company and starting our own business. Last April we celebrated our little design firms 20th anniversary. You don't know what's through that next door but, it's there. Somewhere. Good luck.

    FYI, the first principle should be in all caps! I see parents fail at this all the time. They think they're helping when really they're crippling them. As a business owner we hired a few of them.

  2. Sounds like the story of my life. Take a risk, find out its a flop, and end up regretting it. But ya know I learn something from every experience. And I agree it's tough being around the type of people you don't want to rub off on you. Thanks for the encouragement.

  3. Fear of failure is its own kind of prison. Be passionate about what your career and work hard. You'll do just fine in life.

  4. Great blog post, Ryan! I can relate. It's important to remember that when one door closes, another one opens. God has a plan for each of us. Thanks for sharing! This book sounds like an inspirational read. I'm definitely going to check it out. I love biographies. As a writer/communicator I especially enjoy reading the biographies of journalists such as Anderson Cooper and Barbara Walters. And I also want to compliment you on your efforts to share your knowledge of ag with others through social media. You're an inspiration to people like me. Keep up the good work! I wish you all the best as you determine your next steps in life.

  5. This was a great post. Life is full of chances and risks. We cannot go through life without taking some and there will always be the ones who do not work out, but they help mold who we are…
    You will find something wonderful on your journey…

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