The average Guide reader and I share at least one thing in common: We both are usually broke. We never seem to have the cash we need to pay for important stuff such as medical care and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.
One day a while back I decided that I was sick and tired of being broke all the time. So I decided to start a side business.
“Good morning!” I smiled at the woman behind the counter of the Chewsville, Maryland, general store-turned-post office. I lived on the outskirts of this microscopic village, and now I was going to make it work to my advantage.
“I’m thinking of starting a small home business,” I explained. “See, I’m going to sell taffy on the Internet and call my business Chewsville Chews. Get it? Taffy? Chewsville Chews?”
I could tell the woman was overwhelmed by this brilliant business idea, because she was totally speechless.
“Yep, ‘Choosy Chewers Choose Chewsville Chews’—that’s my company motto.” The woman’s leg moved slightly, and I wasn’t sure if there was a mosquito in the room or if she was attempting to signal the police via a floor-mounted alert button. Either way, I got to the real purpose for my visit.
“If I bring my taffy shipments down here to the post office, could you postmark them with the Chewsville postmark?” I asked. “It’s all part of my marketing strategy.”
It may have been the postmistress’s strategy to get me out of the place, but to my great pleasure she said, “Yeah, I guess we could do that.”
Everything was falling into place. Back home, I scraped together enough bucks to order my first 20 pounds of wholesale taffy. Next I had a company logo made—featuring a taffy wrapper and the Chewsville post office. Then I bought the Internet domain name ChewsvilleChews.com. After all, I didn’t want anyone else to get it first, you know? By then I was broke again, but I knew that would soon change!
Within a few days the box of taffy arrived. The idea was to parcel it out into smaller packages and relabel them as Chewsville Chews. (Hey, I never said the taffy was actually made in Chewsville.)
But then, wouldn’t you know it, I got sidetracked. I had other important things to do: match my socks, feed the cat, take a nap. Somehow building a taffy empire got set aside.
About a year later I decided I was sick and tired of being broke all the time. Hey, I’ve still got that 20 pounds of taffy in the garage! I thought. I can still do this Chewsville Chews thing!
I found the taffy box and popped one of the treats into my mouth. I wanted to make sure it was still good enough to sell and ship.
It wasn’t. The only way I could peddle this collection of rancid garbage would be under the label “Chewsville Chokers.”
I had waited too long to act. Or could it be that God knew something I didn’t?
The Bible says, “ ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you’ ” (Jeremiah 29:11). Sure, those words were originally written to Israel, but I believe they’re meant for you and me as well. So maybe God never intended for me to go down the taffy track. Maybe He knows I’m better off staying in the writing and goofing-around-at-Guide lane.
It’s a very good idea to ask God to steer your life in the direction He wants you to go.
Now, as for all that taffy, what do you think about melting it all down and remolding it into the shape of a petrified tree trunk? I could break pieces off and sell them at a roadside stand in front of my house. Guess I’d better run and get Chewsville Chunks.com before it’s gone.