We sat are a table in the floor’s social area waiting for a colleague to arrive. In our idle time, we chatted and people watched. We could see the comings and goings in several directions. The experience was a relaxing and energizing.
As the elevators doors opened, a familiar colleague walked out. It was as if he was on a mission. With a chance that he had been invited to our meeting, I had every intent to say hello and see how he was doing. As he approached our table I was not sure he recognized anyone at the table. It was as if we were not where we were! My “hi” drifted to silence as he walked by within an arm’s reach of my chair.
As our conversation resumed where it had left off, nothing was said. I still have not figured out what happened or why. The only conclusion I have been able to make is the reality that he mind was absent without leave; it was anywhere but here although the physical evidence said otherwise.
As I consider examples where parents hear their child through the chaos of screaming kids along with stories of old when “God saw the trouble they [his disobeying children] were in and heard their cries for help.” (Psalm 106.44) As busy as he was, he heard and acted on what he had heard.
A gift we have within us at all times is the ability and freedom to be fully present. It is a weakness of mine that is often associated with how others see me. One of my aspirations is to be fully and completely present in every conversation. If I cannot be present, then I hope I can be honest enough to apologize and respect the person(s) I am with.
I am in awe of others that do this well. It is a gift, not only to the individuals one is with, but also to one’s self. For in acknowledging the importance of the one outside, we acknowledge and respect the person who lives within us.