Yesterday, I shared a poem with you that my father had given me years ago. The poem was titled "ANYWAY" and it taught us to persevere "ANYWAY" no matter our circumstances. I read this poem at his funeral in 2012. Today, I want to share another amazing person with you...and that is my Father-in-law...Byrdell. Byrdell passed away in 2016 and I shared these words at his funeral. Byrdell's story: Of all the unique physical characteristics that Byrdell possessed…his bushy eye brows… his Norwegian accent…his contagious smile...the one attribute that I have always been drawn to were his hands. There was something fascinating…unique…intriguing… about his hands. If there were a hundred people lined up side by side, I could tell you which set of hands belonged to Byrdell. When you think about a person’s hands…especially a person who has lived for 92 years…just imagine all of the things that those hands have touched…the lives they have changed...the difference they have made. • Byrdell’s hands were strong…and steady • They held a gun during WWII… protecting his country. • They saved a young man from drowning in a lake… changing his life forever • In 1948 they slipped a ring on the finger of a beautiful young woman named Doris. • They folded American flags, held newborn children…. and later disciplined those same children • They prevented a young mother from rushing into a blazing barn fire in an effort to rescue her son….saving her life…and finding out later… that her son wasn’t even in the barn….but somewhere else at the time. • They drove a tractor, built grain bins, sowed seeds, reaped and harvested crops. • They turned a pipe wrench, built mini storage complexes and flipped thousands of pancakes for the VFW • With his hands, he carried his unconscious brother from a motel room where a natural gas leak was about to take his life. • They folded in prayer and clung tightly to loved ones hands while giving thanks to the Lord • They swung golf clubs, rolled bowling and bocce balls…and raced grandchildren on golf carts across the golf course…and thru the neighborhoods. • With his hands he held his wife, his children, his grandchildren and even his great grand children • And some of his last days were spent holding the hands of his loved ones…and reassuring them that he was ready to go. While visiting with Byrdell the day before he left this life… his last words to me were “Can I touch you.” I reached out and took his hand and squeezed it tight. “Can I touch you?” The truth is that he had touched my heart years ago and his handprint will forever be engraved. As Robert Byrne (Burn) said “The purpose of life is a life of purpose.” Byrdell had a life of purpose!
Stop for a moment and take a look at your hands...if someone were to write about your hands...what would they say? Whose life have you touched? changed? altered forever?
As Children's Pastors/leaders...we touch many lives, we change many lives, we alter many lives forever...and we need to remember this! We are life changers!
Remind yourself daily!
In fact...grab a bottle of lotion and place it on your desk, on your bathroom counter...or any place you choose...as a reminder!
STOP each day and pamper yourself...you are important!
As you pamper your hands...examine them. Whose life have your touched, changed, altered forever? Whose life will you touch today?
Celebrate YOU today! You dear friend...are a life changer!
FYI: Knowing myself, I probably wouldn't stop there! I would have to examine my feet as well. 📷:) After all, we are the hands and FEET of Christ! 📷:)
Have a blessed day and remember YOU ARE A LIFE CHANGER!