I really had the best day ever. I’m warmed like you can’t believe by the affection and kindness of all of my friends.
My birthday is gift-less by design, but full of so many gifts. I truly want for nothing…well maybe a Kindle…or an iPad…no, a Kindle is all I really need. And socks. I love socks.
My special day started at midnight. I was sitting on the settee in our living room, doing some work on the computer and otherwise enjoying our beautifully lit and decorated Christmas tree–I can sit for long seasons in that room during this time of year–when unexpected guests came bursting through the door. It was Chika with a cake in hand and Sarah Moshofsky in tow. Sarah had a laptop open with our Indonesian staff on Skype singing happy birthday. This began about a 30 minute session of talking to everyone on staff and to each of our beautiful clients. It was perfect. The only other place I would want to be for my birthday is North Sulawesi. All of these beautiful people added to my life just in the last year. What a gift.
In the morning I was greeted early by a phone call from Sri Lanka. Ruwan Dharmadasa is a dear friend. I love hearing his Singhalese accent that makes me picture his round face, wire rim glasses and jolly smile. Ruwan is a gem miner and a humanitarian. Those words aren’t usually associated together, I realize, but my friend is an amazing human being. You discover this when you hear him discuss how he runs his operation, how he shares equity with his miners and how he puts money out of his own pocket to secure the highest possible price on a gem so his miners get the full value of their equity.
What a delight it was to hear from you, Ruwan. Thank you for the call.
Then the Facebook avalanche began. Early in the day, I was trying to calculate how I would thank each of you. By mid-day, I had to regroup on a plan because the greetings just kept coming. What a ride. My phone kept buzzing. My wall kept filling up.
I want to sincerely thank all of you who remembered me on my birthday. I feel very special. I’m a rich man.
Back to my gift-less day. More and more, I’m reminded that there is little to captivate us than to love and be loved. There are things that I like a lot, sure. But most of those things circle back to loved ones. I love to play golf, for example. But much of that love centers around a thick layer of affection masquerading as trash talk among close friends. As for golfing alone, that’s a matter of personal health and well-being–restoring and preserving capacity for others who are the true sources of joy.
Joy is my underlying reality right now. I realize that life has seasons and this is a good one. I think peace is a part of the reality too. I’m quieted by the fact that it seems that God has me sitting in the front row to watch Him do some very wonderful things right now. I’m grateful to be sitting there with all of you.
I’m humbled. I’m thankful. I am full. I love you all.