Mining for Gold in a Third World Country

Guiana MapaMy brother Willie called me yesterday with the inevitable news that he had put in his resignation for work. He’s quitting his job as a warehouse manager for Swire Coca Cola to take his wife and two kids (one newborn) down to Guiana, a tiny country off the NorthEastern tip of South America, to mine gold. WHAT!!!! I know, you think he’s crazy right?! And yes, I think it IS a little crazy. However, I can think of a few other people that were this so called crazy that changed the world for the better because of it (Columbus, Copernicus…etc).

So let’s look at all of the downsides to this decision.

  • The economy is in shambles. Not necessarily the best time to quit a well paying job
  • Two really young kids in a third world country might not be the safest thing healthwise
  • Both him and his wife are thousands of miles from their families
  • It’s a risky operation that could fail and leave them broke to start over anew in a few years

I think we could all go on with additional drawbacks to forging the path they’ve chosen. But, let’s now take a look at some of the good reasons for doing this. A few of these only make sense if you actually know my brother Willie and how he operates. He’s probably the hardest worker I know and I would even venture to say he’s never done anything bad in his entire life. The guy is straight as an arrow and I look up to him as an example of everything that is good. So let’s see here:

  • Though the economy is in shambles, the price of gold is $1383.15 as of today and hovering around it’s highest prices ever.
  • He’s lived in Guiana 2 different times in his life. The first was for 2 years serving a mission for his church. The 2nd was for an additional 2-3 years doing what he is going to be doing… mining gold!
  • Thus, he has experience doing what he’s going to be doing.
  • His wife is on board and totally supports him. They made the decision together as a family.
  • He’s refused to give up on a dream of doing what he loves to do. HE ACTUALLY ENJOYS IT which means it’s not just for the money.
  • If it happens to not work out, he has a CDL and several years of managerial experience. Finding a job might be difficult but not impossible even in this economy.
  • …and finally, he’s doing something that 99% of the people in this world don’t have the guts to do… he’s taking a giant step into the dark AFTER having fully thought through everything that is possible to plan for something like this.

I know that no matter what happens, Willie and his family will be okay. I know this because they live righteously and they work hard and are honest in all of their dealings.  The lesson here for me, I believe, is the importance of taking that big step… into the dark.

Trying something new and something big is the only way to make a BIG difference in life. I think President Obama said it fantastically (just because he’s good at saying things doesn’t mean I’m an advocate of his actions) when he said, “We do big things!” It’s what the American dream is all about… even if he is leaving America for Guiana.

Willie is doing something BIG because he has the guts to take a leap of faith. He’s digging for gold and he may just find it. So what am I looking for? What are you looking for? Whatever it is, I suggest you start digging.

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One Response to Mining for Gold in a Third World Country

  1. Rae Mangum says:

    Has Willie seen this. I think he would be interested. enjoyed the perspective.

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