Friday, December 18, 2009

Beautiful people

The other day I stood in line with one of the world's most beautiful people. As far as I know, he's never been on the cover of People magazine, and now that he's 84, he probably won't make it. But public accolade aside, he is a spectacularly beautiful person.
I was stuck in one of those long check-out lanes, debating whether to make a phone call to "use the time well", when we struck up a conversation. He was waiting for his wife (of 60 years) so they could finish up their purchases and head on to their next stop; they were Christmas shopping for the 24 kids and grandkids that are coming home next week. Yep, all 24 of them come home, every year, to celebrate the holidays together. They schedule the days between Christmas and New Years, so that everyone can spend Christmas with "the other families", and then be together--in the home where they all grew up--for 4 days each year. As he told me about these times together, joy poured out of him...deep, deep gratitude for the riches of his life. Turns out he's been a minister his whole life, and now serves simply as a deacon in a church he planted years and years ago. He told me, with deep conviction and a broad smile, "Following the Lord makes every day a new adventure." He really, truly meant it. I've seldom seen such deep-seated contentment, and it transformed a short, elderly man into a vision of beauty.


  1. I want to meet him and glean some wisdom!

  2. The interesting thing about him--talking with him was less like visiting a sage, and more like sitting in front of a work of art. You know that feeling, like everything inside you--maybe even down to your cells--is being re-arranged, and you're not even sure how or why? And you walk away and know that everything's changed. But you don't have any snippet of wisdom to explain it. That's sort of what it was like.