Problem? Opportunity? Propportunity!

By February 18, 2013 No Comments

While working on my book, I get a craving for the smell and taste of freshly baked bread. I still have my mom’s recipe and a few hours on my hands so I head into the kitchen. Part way through the process, I get waylaid by my daughter tempting me to play a game with her. The bread raises twice as much as I intend and is all over the oven by the time I realize the problem. Irreversible error. Houston, we've got a problem.

I bake it anyway. At least we get to enjoy the smell. My wife attempts to console me with praise for my feeble effort. As the bread, if you can even call it that, comes out of the oven, I feel a compounded let-down. It looks worse than I expected.

Vicki helps clean up the mess. It smells great. We pick at the ugly twisted but surprisingly tasty fragments. Rather than throwing out this disaster, Vicki tucks it away neatly in a container. “It still tastes great,” she says, “and we can just pick at it when we want a snack.”

Several hours later, after the initial sting is gone, I am munching on a piece of my disaster and notice that the food dehydrator sitting on the counter is now empty of the banana chips I made a few days ago.


I grab a bread knife, cut my disaster into small cubes, and arrange them on the dehydrator shelves.


Not just any croutons, but the most delicious croutons you ever tasted.  Few of them made it to any salad. Like the fabled Phoenix, my disaster rises from the flames of my oven with a new name, a new opportunity –croutons.

Notice those delicious croutons came from, not in spite of, a problem. Truly one of my finest moments in the kitchen. These small problems/opportunities are important.  They are God-given rehearsals for the big propportunities.

The opportunitiy isn't in the ‘bad' situation, the ‘bad' situation is the opportunity.

– Brad Barton