A Year of Being Kind blog – Monday, May 5, 2014
How to Serve—As an Editor
What a challenge—stuck to the computer screen all day! No, actually, I didn’t spend the whole day stuck here! Only about half of it. (I wish you could see my wink and sly grin right now. Describing them will have to suffice, I’m afraid. Disappointing that humorous facial expressions and snarky vocal inflections don’t translate well through the Internet.) However, I was quite serious today when I offered some editorial comments on the research article of a friend of mine. The article was sent halfway around the world! He and a colleague prepared it for possible publication, and he asked me to read it through. And make pertinent comments, if I saw fit.
Usually, I am a touchy-feely, pastoral-care-type of person. That’s an important aspect of me and my character. But I am much more than merely that. True, I can appreciate how certain aspects of pastoral care are so natural to me, it’s like falling off the proverbial log. But did you know that I worked for almost four school years at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Department of Psychiatry, at the College of Medicine? I served as instructor and coordinator of a small online program. And, I taught a number of people, at the College and beyond. I helped write and refine the online course with day-to-day signs, tests, presentations, and speeches.
But what about the article I commented on today? Well, I saw how much there was that was truly important, in terms of the article from a health care perspective. I advised my friend that I honestly couldn’t accept anything additional, in terms of money. If I had needed to tear something apart, in a serious enough manner, I would have reconsidered, and asked for some financial return. But, today? I willingly pitched in. I found out some fascinating things about health care, and that was enough for me.
A lot of trust was displayed today, trust, openness and honesty. In terms of the primary author, he offered me the opportunity to read his brand new article! And, I willingly tried to be of service to my friend. Just as at church or mission conferences in the church, quick and close relationships are often the norm. We don’t have any time to lose. Let’s take advantage of the chance to serve. The chance to be kind. The chance to be helpful and hopeful.
I sent a detailed email to my friend, page by page. Nothing, really, to change in terms of grammar, syntax, or any correction in word choice. However, I had a good deal to do, in terms of encouragement and helpful comments. I hope my email was informative and instructive. God willing.
Gracious, I feel like dusting off my hands in satisfaction. Good, workmanlike job done by my friend and his colleague! Hmm. I wonder what God will send me tomorrow?
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