Pick up those stones…a history lesson

Team AO,

Welcome to the new Team Alpha Omega blog site! In a less than two weeks we will embark on a new and exciting phase of our evolution with the launch of L.I.F.E. With a new business there should be a new blog, and I look forward to sharing and learning from each of you along this journey.  It is my hearts desire to create an environment that each of you can prosper and grow, and this blog will be an asset for us to sharpen our thoughts and ideas together.

For those new to the team ,  you can rest assured that you have joined a great group of leaders, and fortunately they are not novices. For the past several years we have been fighting to build, fighting to sustain,and often fight to rebuild this community.  We have made many changes along the way, but the goal of creating a diverse group of leaders that unify in order to achieve their goals and dreams has not changed. Our main purpose is to give God glory and to help the individual leaders on this team live life on purpose.

Chris Brady recently released a great CD entitled “Turning points, give me that horizon”, and it reminded me of my personal journey, and the biblical story of the Children of Israel crossing over the Jordan River into the land of promise. In the account, God had brought the Israelites out of slavery and through the wilderness (struggle)  and to the edge of the promised land.  His leader Moses commissioned twelve men to spy the land, and the report was great, but fear caused them to doubt.  Fear caused them to rebel, and God punished them by forcing them to walk on the edge of their promised land for forty years. In that time every adult died except for Joshua and Caleb, and those two men eventually led the people into the promised land.  The entire mass of people had to cross over the Jordan River and miraculously God allowed them to cross over the flooded riverbanks. Once on the other side, Joshua commanded that a man from each of the twelve tribes walk back into the water and pick up a stone as a memorial of their dream, struggle, and victory. For those of us that have endured our wilderness experience, we are now at the edge of a great business endeavor, and as a reminder of just how good God has been to each of us, we should reach back and grab some of our stepping-stones toward our promise land.  The stones should remind us all of how blessed we are and how the sovereign hand of God has gently guided us to this place.  Little small things along the way that could not have happened by chance…

Stone 1: My senior year of high school I decide to take a break and skip Geometry to take Senior Math (blow off class I thought).  In senior math we have a crazy teacher named Mr. Mobley. He offers a day out of class to anyone wanting to take a logic test and fill out a questionnaire.  I received a 98% on the test, and filled out the form thinking nothing of it afterwards.  Two months later, my mother gets a packet from DeVRY University saying that I have been accepted! I graduated high school on June 6th, and I started in the Computer Information Systems degree at DeVRY in Kansas City on July 9th. Two years and nine months later I received my B.S. Degree and was hired on at Southwestern Bell. Accidentally applied for one college, sent one resume and I was engulfed in corporate America at twenty years old.

Stone 2: That same crazy math teacher had an exercise where two students get married in class and have to manage a budget for a grade. I was randomly paired up with cheerleader, pommy, swing choir, and most popular girl in school Tina Potts! Up until that point we had been in school for seven years together, and we may have had three conversations in passing.  We start dating, went to prom, and today three kids and 19 years later she is my beloved wife. The one and only girlfriend that I ever had.

Stone 3: Tina has an older brother name Colby Potts. We too had been in the same  school, in the same neighborhood, and even on the same basketball team, for years, but never really knew one another as friends. As Tina and I get more serious, her father William Lee Potts begins to mentor me, and Colby and I formed a bond of brotherhood.

Stone 4: One day Colby invites Tina and I to a  meeting at his house to discuss a “business”.  He tells me that some guy named Larry was in town with some friends to meet Lou Brock of Cardinal fame, and somehow they missed Lou and the friends knew Colby. Colby had signed up in this thing over the phone, and the people were coming to explain what it was? We go and meet Larry Van Buskirk, and that night I signed up in the thing that neither Colby, Kim, Tina nor I knew anything about!

Stone 5: That “thing” turns out to be Team of Destiny, and this guy named Orrin Woodward is revolutionizing the old industry of direct selling by focusing on great information that develops leaders and not movers of products.  We were building communities of leaders that then partnered with a company to monetize that building effort through the purchasing of their goods.  In 18 months we somehow learned enough to replace most of Tina’s income and she becomes a stay at home mother. Eventually, this thing is renamed TEAM, and we have our eyes set on making it big.

Stone 6: As time goes the relationship between Team and our supplier had grown sour. Tina, Colby and I are on a flight to Atlanta for a big meeting to discuss the future, and this guy named Larry Cheatham just happens to be on the same flight.  We had seen him in meetings, but at the time we were on separate teams.  We connect as friends while maintaining our business decorum.  In a crazy turn of events we resign from our original suppliers business model and after honoring a six month non-compete clause we hook up with Mona Vie as a supplier. ( Oh by the way I get laid off and Colby resigned from his job and we have no income for six months) During that time Larry Cheatham’s business support team leaves him and his leaders (Joe and Tracy Clark) without support, and we mutually agree to unite as one team. Team Journey and Team AO become a formidable organization. Mona Vie proves to be a great fitness product, and we continue to drink it to this day.

Today we stand on the precipice of a grand new future. A future filled with promise and possibilities.  Some died in the wilderness because of fear. Others simple chose to retreat back to the comfortable(Egypt), and still others have weathered the trials and are primed to take LIFE into their own hands.  As I pick up this latest stone, we stand united as one team with one vision of living life on purpose! LIFE launches on 11-1-11, and we just experienced the fastest growth in our history. I believe that this is only the beginning, and I encourage you my teammates to share your “stones” with the rest of us. What small providential events led you up to this point in your journey.  Pick up the stones and share your history…

6 comments

  1. Great article, I have been around for a while and seen a lot of changes. I’ve seen great people come and go because they could not see the vision or purpose that they were needed. It reminds me of the story of Esther. She had to take a stand for her people. We also have to take a stand for our families. It requires more courage to stay than to leave. But I do believe just like Esther , “who knoweth whether thou art come to TEAM for such a time as this?”

  2. Providential turning points from Tracy’s life…

    1. I graduated highschool and attended SMSU – to be at a school with my friend, Sella Garlich. I needed that “safety” while being away from home. I did well in school but really had no direction to go with my Sociology and Communications degree. My plan was to stay in school longer to figure that out and get a Master’s degree in Communication, still without direction.

    2. I was invited home by my sister for a blind date in St. Louis a month before college gradution. The date stunk, but later that night, I met Joe Clark. There was something different about Joe and we immediately started dating. On the hope that he was “the one”, I gave up graduate teaching at SMSU and moved back to St. Louis. Joe and I married 3 years later and now enjoy our 4 beautiful children.

    3. Prior to our meeting, Joe had met Larry Cheatham at a false fire alarm. Larry and Joe became friends and he would later become one of our closest friends, and business partners. Through a turn of events that were out of our control, we left a company that we were all affiliated with. We had not seen any financial success with that company, yet had achieved some personal growth.

    4. Just before Joe and I married, I was asked to babysit for a family that was from Texas but would be in St. Louis for a business convention. Though second guessing the whole babysitting night and wondering why “I” was even asked to do so by someone I hardly knew as part of a business support team, I did babysit a Saturday evening. Even while the convention was not for us, we knew there would be a Sunday worship service. Not having other plans, we decided we would go. It was that morning that I gave my heart to Jesus and began my Christian journey.

    5. In college I saw motherhood as a good thing, but not something that deserved “full-time” status. As part of a community-building group and prior to having children, we had the opportunity to read and hear a different viewpoint on educating from Oliver DeMil. Our paradigms shifted and after hearing him in Utah, we were convicted that we were to homeschool our future children and give them a Bibilical educational foundation. I now am a stay-at-home home-schooling Mom.

    6. We separated from that business group and it was very unsettling. Even yet, we were confident that the separation had to happen. Months later, after holding to a six-month non-compete clause, and trusting Larry Cheatham, we joined him on a new venture that he introduced to us – a team through Monavie.

    7. While we grabbed ahold to this new venture and started to see some success, it was product focused (and a good one) and not leadership focused, which was our passion. And, by a relationship that was formed between Larry Cheatham and now mentors and friends of ours, Raymond and Tina Abernathy, we were able to graft into a solid team. This team, Alpha Omega, welcomed us with open arms and grew to fill a void we had for mentorship and accountability. I finally had a Godly woman who I could talk business, family, relationships and more with. I had never had this prior to joining Team Alpha Omega. Tina has challenged and stretched me and continues to do so.

    8. Now we stand at the cusp of a new turning point called LIFE. And this time, instead of there being an unsettled feeling in the pit of my stomach, there is a eagerness in me. Through my journey of personal and business skill development, a hunger and passion has arisen in me to grow and help other people learn Truth that they may never have heard. This opportunity will extend the boundaries of our reach, and with God on our side, we know the harvest will be abundant.

    Tracy Clark

  3. I am always amazed at the leadership that we are so blessed to have here in the Gateway To The West ! This Blog is a PC level without ? It is just around the Turn for our leaders ! Those of us under them get ready this turn is like the ones on the dirt track your gut says hit the brakes slow down but reality you have to hit the gas cut the wheel hard throw back end of the car around and power threw the turn and into the straight away with everything your motor can crank out to the finish ! Like the new look !

  4. Awesome site BD. It is great to read the story of Team AO in St. Louis and beyond. All the history and stories of accomplishment by the Hand of God sets a capstone on the launch of LIFE. God bless and onward to the Glory of God. JG

  5. As we look back we can see how God has orchestrated our lives.
    1. My life’s journey began as a senior in high school when a friend of my mother gave me a job in her restaurant. She gave me the job based on my mother’s credibility because she didn’t know me or the type of person I was, but she knew my mother’s character.
    2. One day my employer’s nephew can home on leave and I was introduced to Edd Paul. Little did I know that he would become my husband, lead me to Christ, be my best friend and a faithful business partner.
    3. When Edd returned home from the Army, he went to work at General Motors. There was a group of men who held a Bible study there and they invited Edd to join the group. Later they invited him to visit their church. Edd accepted the invitation and was saved.
    4. As the head and leader of our home, Edd’s commitment to Christ, lead me to salvation at Bethesda Temple Church. It was here that we met Kim Fultz who would later become Kim Potts.
    5. When were shown this business plan, Edd immediately saw the potential. I however was pre-occupied earning a degree. Once again he led the family and signed up with the Team. Thank God he didn’t wait for me to see it or to finish school!
    6. All along this journey Edd has faithfully led our family and gone through the wilderness experience victoriously. He has seen many people come and many people go. He is the only remaining member of the original Team TNT. He plugged into the system and held on to the words of Orrin: “those who stay will be champions”.
    7. Because of Edd’s tenacity and example, I am his 100% business partner. Yes I received the degree I was working towards, but that degree can’t help others. Our family’s name has been elevated because of his vision. For these reasons I look forward to seeing him achieve the victory he saw so many years ago when first shown this business. We welcome LIFE!

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