I was standing chatting with an acquaintance after breakfast when his cell phone beeped. He looked down and found a notice from his business security system that someone had tried to enter without the right password. Instead of rushing off, he told me about an employee, recently fired who stole time. It had to do with her figuring out how to change the office computer check-in system to show her coming in earlier than she actually did for a few years. It came to light when a colleague suggested to her that she was lazy, not getting the work done so often that this colleague always had to make up for it. The time stealer got angry and went to this man, her boss, to protest her colleague's "insults". His investigation into this person's computer records in the office exposed her scheme.
Stealing time started me thinking about giving time as a generous way of kindness that so many people follow. Many of my friends are volunteers, doing hands-on work like delivering meals on wheels, coaching sports, creating community gardens, or others donate time sitting on charitable boards and advisory committees, or even pausing on a busy day to listen to another person's story.
I would like to applaud all the volunteers today, both formal and informal givers of the gift of time to all of us who need you.
By the way, before his story ended, the man received another notice that all was well. Another employee forgot the new password to the office. We each continued with our day.