Friday, October 17, 2008

Happy Birthday!

The world looks at you on your special day, and sees an old lady, limited by her age, her wheelchair, her oxygen tank. Our culture looks at you and sees someone who has nothing of value to offer in this age of IM, texting, cell phones, and space shuttles. Our society looks at you and sees someone who does not 'fit' any of the all important demographics for advertising, for sales, for profits.

But God looks at you, in your daily love for others more than you love yourself, and sees a child who is as young and fresh as the dew on the first morning of creation.

God looks at you, as you show more concern for how the days of your neighbors are going than how your years are winding down, and sees a young person who is about her Abba's business rather than doing what is 'expected' of you.

God looks at you, as you unceasingly open your arms to welcome the stranger, the outcast, the lost, the lonely, the differently gifted - all those people our society overlooks, and sees another mother hen would gather her chicks to her heart.

God looks at you, as you laughingly teach Dusty the Church Dog to gently take the cracker from your lips, as you joyfully celebrate the birthday of Teddy with a funny card and a gift of love, as you smile at the infants and children in your church who all tenderly call you 'Granny,' and sees the one who heard that call to 'follow me' and has always been on the journey.

I don't know who others see in their mind's eye when Paul talks about the woman in the early church, women like Eunice and Lois, Persis and Claudia, Mary and Phoebe, but when I come across those names, I see you.

Happy Birthday, Inez. God loves you very much and so do I.

(c) 2008 Thom M. Shuman

1 comment:

Jim Hadley said...

W-O-W! A beautiful tribute to a beautiful lady! Thank you, Thom, for continuing to share your wonderful gift of words with us. and a belated congratulations on your appointment to Glendale Church. I hope and pray it will be a truly rewarding experience. Jim Hadley