Davonia and I recently went to see “The Blind Side.” It is a true story of a young man and the family who befriended him. The significance of this story goes far beyond the saga of one young person. This movie is important because it tells a story that happens all around us, and may have happened to us. It is the story of the difference a mentor makes.

We live in a complex world of many moving parts. Whether we flourish or falter is not always a result of talent. Sometimes, it’s about knowing where the potholes are located and steering clear of them. It’s also about knowing where the treasure is buried. And, it’s also about forming relationships with those who have been down the road before and are willing to give us a hand.

As the movie unfolds, we see a young man who time and time again would have been eaten alive by the “system” had it not been for a family who knew how to navigate that system and saw potential inside him. As millions crowd into theaters around the country to view this blockbuster, I can only imagine how many see at least a part of themselves in Michael Oher. If we have made it very far in our chosen professions, it is likely due in part to someone saw something special in us and went out of his or her way to make clear the path.

Who are the mentors in your life? How different would your life be right now had it not been for that special person who did that which was neither required nor expected? Have you taken the time lately to say “thanks”? If not, what are you waiting for?