Wednesday, July 15, 2015

More on treasures in the attic

My quest for a manageable amount of "stuff" in my attic is motivated by my desire to save my amazing children from the real trauma of having to throw away so much of "Dad's stuff."  I'm very conscious of my mission here.

Among the unexpected experiences and emotions of my mining the attic, I've discovered lots of correspondence from across the years. 

And in that connection, I've noted a very discernable pattern. 

Early in my "career" I tended to save "positive" feedback from my constituents--mainly members of the churches that I served.  I've discovered so many letters and notes of encouragement from those early days.  Many bring tears to my eyes and surprises to the memory capacity of my heart and soul. 

Later in my work life--have I ever had a job?--I simply threw away the positive notes. 

As a matter of fact, I threw away almost all of the feedback.  I read it all, positive and negative. During this period,  I always tossed the positive.  Some of the negative remains.  I'm not sure what all this means, but it seems to me that as I've grown older, I've also come to benefit from clarity and from criticism. 

One thing I know for sure, really caring about people matters. 

And, it's not a bad way to build a life as over against a job or career.  I've never been perfect, far from it, but I have cared.

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