Please enjoy this blogpost by BRI member Aubrey Nehring.
Either way, I want to share some thoughts that may encourage you no matter what stage in life you find yourself. Last Friday was my last day as CEO of Audubon Area Community Services after thirty years of service as Head Start Director and CEO. I have included a photo taken by my Human Resources Director as I walked out of the building for the last time as CEO. The expression on my face is an indication of my emotions on that day. However, when I got into my car and was pulling out of the parking lot, I had a sudden moment of sadness and loss. But you know what—it only lasted for a brief moment for it was immediately replaced by thankfulness as the Lord reminded me of my wonderful years at Audubon. As I headed home, I found myself filled with joy and thankfulness for what the Lord had given me the opportunity to experience and accomplish throughout my career.
I am three days into my retirement and today I sent a birthday wish on Facebook to a longtime friend and colleague who has been retired for several years. I asked her if she had any advice for me as I begin my retirement. Her reply was simple but profound: “I think the main message is to love the Lord and love family, friends and life!!!!!” (Marsha Lawrence, February 3, 2016). As I pondered her words my spirit said Yes and Amen for that is the essence of my personal outlook on life! And that is my word for you today. No matter where you are or what you are doing—make this your goal for each day and when you later look back on your life and career, you too will say Yes and Amen—I loved the Lord and loved my family, friends, and life!
My close friend and colleague, Eileen Coogan, who is President of BRI this year asked me if I would consider writing for the BRI blog. This excited me for one of my goals in retirement was to do more writing. Therefore, you will be hearing from me regularly as I share some of my thoughts, experiences and words of encouragement in the days and weeks ahead!