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Legatus Magazine

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Thomas Monaghan | author
Jul 01, 2010
Filed under Chairman
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Turning all things to good

We all need to be mindful that good often comes out of challenging circumstances . . .

Thomas Monaghan

We all know that sometimes in life — whether in our business or personal affairs — we are dealt unexpected setbacks. You wouldn’t be where you are today if you didn’t know how to turn such setbacks into stepping stones.

I was recently reflecting on such an experience. As a young man, I had been trying to find a job in order to pay my way through architecture school, when I noticed a recruiting desk in a post office. I had heard that I could get my college paid for if I joined the Army. The recruiter told me that if I enlisted for three years, I would get two years of college free, so I signed up.

As I filled out the papers, I noticed for the first time a little ball-and-anchor symbol in one corner. I asked the recruit next to me if this was the Marine Corps or the Army. He looked at me in disbelief and told me in no uncertain terms that it was the Marines! I was pretty upset at the recruiter for not correcting me whenever I referred to the Army, but then I realized I had a part in it too. I decided to make the best of the situation, telling myself there couldn’t be that big a difference between the Army and Marines.

I later found out there was a very big difference which, had I known it, would have kept me from ever joining the Marines. Yet, to this day I’m grateful for the training and character formation I received in the Corps — so much so that I believe it’s the best preparation for a business career.

We all need to be mindful that good often comes out of challenging circumstances. It’s not just a matter of having a positive outlook. As Christians, we can be encouraged by St. Paul’s words: “We know that all things work for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.” (Rom 8:28).

Thomas Monaghan is Legatus’ founder and chairman. He is a member of Legatus’ Naples Chapter.

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