Some good friends lost their grandfather last week. (In fact this family is three generations of friends, their grandparents were good friends with my grandparents, our parents were good friends, and their five kids and the four kids in my family all grew up together . .. and then the eldest child married my best friend, Sally, and their cousin Jenny is has been a best friend since we were born . . . so that is a long way of explaining that the friendship between our families runs deep, I knew her grandfather and grew up receiving hugs from her grandma); and so when I read Kristen's lovely tribute to her grandfather, I could agree with every word. He really was that wonderful.
It reminded me of another friend; he had open heart surgery recently, and this is what his wife wrote about him the next day:
I think Nate knows the name of every staff person, cleaning lady, gurney driver, tech that has come into his room.....plus how many children they have, what they are doing for Xmas, etc.... true style (this was before the surgery)...and of course he'll want to send personal 'thank yous' to each one when he gets out. You just got to love this man!!!
And once again reading this I was smiling and nodding, with tears . .. yes, this is the Nate I know. It does not surprise me at all that he would have noticed and genuinely cared about every single person he met in the hospital.
I am writing this for myself today. I think so much about what I should be doing with my life- if I should go back to school or be more determined about writing or should I be working part-time or . . . or or . .. what makes a life most meaningful, most significant? How do I know how hard to push or when to let go, whether just being a mom is enough . ..? all of these questions, and then when I think about these two people . .. and how RARE is this kind of virtue . . . I realize how unimportant are my questions of doing. I want the meaning and significance of my life to be in it's BE-ing.
I get a little hopeless sometimes and start to think- where are the GOOD people in the world today? The world is full of people who accomplish great things- where are the people who "have never spoken a cross word," or the people who sincerely care about people or say thank-you or the couples who have laid together each night for sixty-six years and sung love songs? Where are the people who shine like stars? I am thankful to have known a few of them.
Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”[a] Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. Phil.2:14-16