This morning, nearly 250 West Virginians gathered at the West Virginia Capitol to kick of the 2013 National Day of Prayer. Though an, “unavoidable conflict” kept Governor Tomblin from joining us, Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, Coach Don Nehlen, and Jeff Jenkins were on hand to lead the celebration. At the end of the event, I had the opportunity to share some parting thoughts. Below are my remarks, along with some pictures from the day’s event.
My thanks to those in attendance, as well as to our sponsors for making this event possible.
Five and a half years ago, my wife and I moved from Morgantown to Charleston. Our oldest son was 2 and our second son was making my wife very uncomfortable in her latter stages of pregnancy. We knew no one in Charleston. I had just started a job with a group known as the West Virginia Values Coalition, what would later become the Family Policy Council of West Virginia.
At our first board meeting, we realized that there were hundreds of issues that we needed or wanted to address, but insufficient funds to pay me through the end of the year.
Our board looked at a lot of models for how to conduct business. We consulted with fundraising consultants who told us their best ideas for how to raise money. There were plenty of charts and graphs by which we – the leaders – were trying to chart a functional course by which we could operate a viable and influential business.
We must have spent hours thinking through various approaches we could take to make this organization move forward. Nothing seemed to come together easily. We were simultaneously frustrated and motivated. But, we felt stymied. Almost at the same time, I recall the members of the board looking at one another, looking at me, and realizing that we needed to start again, this time beginning our meeting in prayer.
Our Founding Fathers came to a very similar conclusion, albeit on a much more grand scale. At the constitutional convention of 1787, after weeks of wrangling over how to phrase the founding documents of our country and how to chart it’s future course, it was Ben Franklin who took to the floor of a convention hall that was filled with equal parts frustration and motivation, but entirely at a stalemate.
About Jeremy Dys
Jeremy Dys is the FPCWV's President and General Counsel. In addition to his duties of providing strategic vision and leadership to the FPCWV, Dys is the chief lobbyist and spokesman. Dys is regularly featured in local, state, and national print, radio, and television outlets. He lives close to Charleston with his wife and growing family.