Today is my birthday. I’ve reached an age (49) where I have enough of everything. In fact, I have cardboard boxes in my dinning room I plan to fill with the extra stuff (books, knick knacks, and old cloths). My closets and shelves are full, and over flowing! It’s not that I don’t like nice stuff. I do. I would have been more then excited to buy that Art Nouveau mansion I looked at last month. But I’m trying to be content with what I have. And I’m trying to let go of all the extra stuff that clutters my life. Some times I’m embarrassed by how much I have. Sarah played with her best friend from school on Monday. Afterwards I took her home. Her parents are very poor immigrants. Sarah packs extra food in her lunch everyday. I suspect she is feeding this girl. When I walked into her housing complex I felt ashamed by my wealth. I was humbled. I don’t know how else to put it. How can I have so much, and they have so little? It was humbling.
This morning Juergen woke me early. The kids wanted to give me gifts before school. Sarah gave me a sweet stuffed polar bear. Philip bought me a dancing dog. Juergen took the morning off and took me out to breakfast. I got cards, phone calls, and a cake baked by Jessica and her teacher. Again I am humbled. I’m overwhelmed by the love of my family and friends. Sometimes I can not speak with out crying. I’m over whelmed by God’s grace. But my heart breaks for the poor. I find it uneasy to walk in a world with so much goodness and so much poverty. I guess God believes I can handle the extremes. I find myself more and more confused by it all. I’m very grateful for all that I have. I hope I can help lift people out of physical, emotional, and spiritual poverty. I find it all odd…life is so extreme. I guess this isn’t your typical birthday reflection. It’s what I feel right now. I feel overwhelmed by goodness, and overwhelmed by the needs of others. My heart and mind are much too small to manage it. I’m so glad I’m not God. How can he manage it all?