Last week I wrapped up an extended consulting engagement. I never expected the contract to go as long as it did. When it ended, several friends asked me what I would miss most about the company. The answer has always been the same, the people I met along the way.
The relationship I had with the work had reached its natural conclusion. Wrapping up my work and handing it over felt right. While there were potential new assignments within the company, they were just that, new. The other part of work is just beginning, relationships.
Even in the first few days since leaving I can see the lingering touch of individuals with good intentions. Many observe that “God keeps track of the decent folk; what they do won’t soon be forgotten.” (Psalm 37.18) Life is reminding me that we are naturally god-like when it comes to our memories. With each passing day, I remember the protagonists less and less. The emotions that came with the battles and differences of view have already diminished to the point that I can see the two sides. In contrast, the memories of those that are striving to do something better continues to sharpen. I can see actions and choices that I accepted with thanks more clearly; many are acts of courage and valor. I look at the moments when someone shared their insights and counsel as treasured gifts.
Life moves on and I am exploring the next. When it comes, I want to remember three mantras I often forgot on this last assignment.
Recognize gifts when they occur. Thank-you diminishes in value as the time between the event and the response increases.
Saying thank-you is just the beginning. Return the gift by giving unconditionally. No strings, no obligation gifts are treasures that open when the time is right.
Doing the right thing is never wrong. One may need to think about how one acts; the question “will I act” should never be in doubt.
Life reminds me the next is now; it is always found in the moment we have.