Show Up and Glow Up

Words of Inspiration from Our Director of Field Operations

By Houston Hawley, Vice President of  Operations

It was a blistering hot day, 98 degrees with 100% humidity. Sweat is dripping down my brow, and I can barely grip the football as I attempt to throw with pinpoint accuracy. 100+ college coaches watch my footwork, throw mechanics, and precision as I showcase my talent at a quarterback recruiting camp.

First throw, off-target. 

I didn’t get my feet set and threw behind the receiver.

Second throw, off-target.

The ball slips out of my hand and misses the receiver by a full five yards.

I take a minute to regroup with a million questions floating around in my head: How did I get here? Why am I not performing? Am I ready for this? Do I deserve this opportunity?  And then I remember...

Houston prepares to throw as quarterback for Apex High School. 

Since I was only 5 years old, my greatest aspiration was to play college sports. I dreamt of leading my team to victory in front of a roaring crowd of fans; my family and friends cheering me on from the stands. But achieving this goal wouldn’t be a walk in the park.

I was not highly recruited out of high school. In fact, college coaches had no idea who I was, but that wasn’t going to deter me. I found a recruiting camp online and drove up to Washington and Lee University the very next day, without knowing what I was getting into. No invite, no letters, no calls from coaches...

I just decided to show up.

I worked so hard for this; weight lifting, film study, thousands of hours of practice. Was I really going to give up on my dreams? 

“No,” I said, as my thoughts manifested into words.

“No,” I repeated. This was my opportunity to reap the rewards of my blood, sweat, and tears.

It was time to show up.

I regained my focus, puffed out my chest, and decided I’ve worked too hard not to give this opportunity everything I’ve got.

Third throw, on-target.

Fourth throw, on-target.

Fifth throw, on-target.

That camp was the beginning of a fantastic journey. I inevitably accomplished my goal of playing college football and enjoyed every second of it. Along the way, I made lifelong friends and grew into a better man, but it never would’ve happened...

If I didn't show up.

Houston on the practice field at Cornell University.

You may not have found your calling or deduced what your ultimate goal is, but you can still show up.

Show up to work and give 100%...

Because you'll establish a “Spirit of Excellence,” which will propel you forward on your journey.

Show up for your friends and family...

Because you’ll learn the importance of “We Before Me,” which will make you a better brother, sister, father, or mother.

Show up for those who are in need...

Because you’ll internalize the value of “Grace Through Generosity,” which will make you a beacon of light throughout your community.

Your past experiences, good and bad, have molded you into the person you are today. Those experiences have provided the foundation for you to build the rest of your life upon. But the only way to build that life is to lay one brick at a time. And in order to lay that next brick...

You have to show up.

Ready to show up? Join our team today!