Well, I thought turning 31 would mean my birthday wouldn't be anything special. I was wrong! My birthday turned out a lot better than I expected!
My friend, Kathy, who has been working with us part-time, got to work before I did and left me a bunch of "happys" on my desk. I was so shocked to walk in and see a plant (I call it my "Birthday Tree" - it's a big one!), gift basket and a gift bag on my desk. I thought she had told the guys in the office about my birthday and they managed to get their gifts their early - but all that was from her! In addition to those gifts, she took me to lunch. Kathy is a wonderful friend!
But the fun didn't end there!
After lunch, I received two flower arrangements! I've never gotten this many flowers in my life!!! One of the guys on my staff, and his wife, sent me a cute bouquet of flowers and my precious friend, Tiffany, (you know who you are!) sent me another arrangement that was simply beautiful! I was so overwhelmed!
It was just a great day and I really felt special. Not only did I get those thoughtful gifts, but I received many phone calls and emails from family and friends. I'm so terrible about remembering birthdays, I always feel guilty when people remember mine! That will have to change if I'm going to be a good youth leader! I really should do it so I'll be a better "friend" to my friends!!!
Sometimes we think the small things we do for people don't amount to much, but I believe those are the things that count the most. I think my favorite "gift" of the whole day was a handmade card from Kathy's granddaughter. Trishten is nine and just came back from youth camp a couple of weeks ago, deeply impacted by Christ moving in her heart. Kathy told me there was a song they sung during camp that Trishten especially liked, so I made her a cd containing some great worship music - and this song ("Here I Am to Worship"). Evidently, Trishten has just been awed that the cd is hers forever and was so thankful, she asked her Nana if she could make me a birthday card (I guess she noticed Kathy getting the stuff together for my birthday.) Anyway, in the card, she told me I was "sweet as pie" and I'll tell you - that made my day!
That's what kind of impact I want to have on the young people I will work with. Not that I am so great - but that they are drawn closer to God and are blessed because of something I did to touch them.
As I said, it was a great day!