We live in our present our entire lives. We live and learn and age. We fight off demons of bad times, and we hope to reach the shores of our dreams. Our childhood dreams are so vibrant, as they should be. In fact, what separates accomplishment from non accomplishment on this earth is being able to hold onto a dream long enough to fulfill it. Once our life runs its course, though, we are gone from this earth. How will the life we lived help others?
“All companies are a little screwed up because they are made up of people, and we are all a little screwed up.”
There was a time that we barely knew our parents, much less ourselves. For some, those were the good days. For others, they are still running from those days. At some point we hit an intersection where, regardless of how blessed or cursed our childhoods were, we awaken to realize it is our turn. Some of us feel called for good and right and we overcome to see the glass as half full. Others of us feel so oppressed that our perspective and impact on others is to see the glass as half empty.
With no judgement, let’s focus on the subset of us that feel called enough for good and right that we overcome, and we still see the glass as half full.
I have said many times in my career, “All companies are a little screwed up because they are made up of people, and we are all a little screwed up.” It is funny but true. Is there a source for strength to be positive and help others, despite our flaws?
“You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day, Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you.”
Every morning that we awaken we have a choice. We will be challenged. The challenges either unite or divide us from our loved ones and teams. Who will lead? Who will follow? Who will deceive? Who will divide? Who will come up with the solution? Who will win for good? I have led my family, superiors, and subordinates on the strong belief that the glass is half full, and the end will be victorious. I believe that. How can we have such faith? Who is helping us to make it so?
In Matthew 7:24-27, Jesus said, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine, and acts upon them, may be compared to a wise man, who built his house upon the rock. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded upon the rock. And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act upon them, will be like a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst against that house; and it fell, and great was its fall.”
Jesus said that His word is a safe place. To build a life of godly success in an uncertain world, hear and act on the words of Jesus.
Want an even more amazing truth? Psalm 91:1-7 says it magnificently. “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.’ Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler And from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover you with His feathers, And under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler. You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the arrow that flies by day, Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday. A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you.”
I have the confidence and faith in God to see the way, feel the good, keep the faith, and lead as an optimist. In business, all of this applies. All of it. We can make a difference as a mom, dad, spouse, mentor, boss, and friend. Leading to believe in a positive outcome and fighting to make it so is powerful. Uniting a family, team, or group of peers to victory is a worthwhile cause. It teaches so much. This does not suggest naïvety of risk, ignorance of the downside, or failure to see the snares.
Did we spend so much time on ourselves unavailable to others that the memory of us will be a fading sadness of an empty chair?
There is no amount of human knowledge or capability that even approaches the power of God’s promise to bless us. Accepting God’s blessing means you have faith, feel God is choosing your steps, and He will be true to His word.
With the current state of things globally regarding the Corona virus, it will challenge leaders to remain calm, make some tough choices, try to guess right, and lead. People throw darts at real leaders. It comes with the turf. My recommendation is to be open and honest at home and at work about the facts of this virus. The media hype and panic is not leadership. It is what it is. Some facts. Lots of innuendo. Lots of opinions from ignorant people. Worst case scenarios. Yet there are also facts from wise and knowledgable experts and we should heed their statements. Remaining calm, rational and leading is what we do. This is just another leadership moment.
Now back to the punchline and title of this humbling post. One day we will be a memory to those we leave behind. What will our memory be? Did we spend so much time focused on ourselves that other’s memories of us will be a fading sadness of an empty chair? Did we walk past so many opportunities to love, share and help others that they will not even remember us for long? Did we make a difference in people’s lives? Did we help others and care? Did we pass along wisdom and live as an example?
We need to take heed that our life’s efforts and contributions leading and helping and serving other souls will sincerely help people when we are gone. We should all be trying to make a world that is half full, not half empty, optimistic, empowered, fun, loving and good while we are here. They will remember us for as much when we are gone. Otherwise, one could make a case that we never really mattered as much to others as we did to ourselves.
Until next time. Cheers!