Writing a reference is partly an exercise in reflection. How well do I know the person I am introducing? Is it actually possible to capture and share this person with a stranger? What is the essence of what I am trying to say? Does it reflect my relationship? Does it tell the “truth”?
As I sit in the echo of having just written a reference, I am sure of the following. I know the person well. I’m not sure it is possible to capture what is at the core. I tried but probably didn’t do justice to the introduction. In the end my goal was to simply convey the following statement; great person, strong, principle individual with a passion for integrity, someone I would gladly work with anytime, anywhere. It is the truth as proven by my experience. The words reflect the relationship and journey over time.
One shouldn’t assume we always understood each other. We didn’t. We did learn and grow from the experience, both of us. One cannot automatically conclude that each step was successful. There were many failures along the way. Were there intense moments full of doubt, frustration, and even anger? Absolutely, at least on my part! In the midst of the steps there were a few things I was sure existed. First, we shared a mutual passion to win. Second, everything we did grew out of a desire to “do the right thing”. Third, mistakes were made along the way. The irony of the latter is this. It wasn’t until a few mistakes had been made and the corrective action taken that everyone realized the following.
I was, am, and will be accepted just as I am.
I am loved, treasured, and valued because of who I am, not what I do.
The goal is to win through integrity, not just get to a destination.
The relationship taught me about mine with Divinity. “This is the real and eternal life: that they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent.” (John 17.3)