There are several people, like the cashier at the grocery store, and places, like a parking lot, that we don’t think are very important. We just don’t think that much about them.

I’m sure the people of San Germán had several things like this too. After all, what meaning did an elementary school founded by a Texas missionary have? Or a one-hoop gym? How about a poet?

Thursday, I had the privilege of looking through the San Germán museum. As I reflect back on that experience, it seems clear that what seems to be unimportant paves the way to the changing of history. That elementary school? It ended up growing into being Interamerican University, which now offers a large swath of undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs. That one-hoop basketball gym was the site of Puerto Rico’s first basketball game, and now the sport is widespread throughout the island. Poets like José Marcial Quiñones ended up defending sugarcane interests in court for Puerto Rico, while Lola Rodriguez freed El Morro prisoners and later composed the Puerto Rico national anthem.

A little history of basketball in Puerto Rico

This has nudged me to reconsider the value I assign to events in my life that at face value may not have much meaning. For example, my decision nearly three years ago to sign up for a Roberts summer camp led me to forge a connection with Dr. Kovach, which in turn helped ease me into the Global Honors Program, which has led me to meet several wonderful friends and develop a Christlike mindset for global impact. If I hadn’t made that one mundane decision, some or all of that might not be the case right now.

So I encourage you, remember that no event or person in your life is too small to springboard into something significant – and that includes yourself!


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