No, not my birthday. Not for another few weeks, anyway. But it is my blogfather's birthday, and I believe that makes this my 4th annual Blogfather's Birthday Blogpost. The one where--as a gesture of gratitude for introducing me to the blogosphere, reading my ramblings, and, retweeting my posts--I make some meager attempt to write something here that honors him.
This year it took me a bit to decide what to write, but I was moved recently by something Keith shared in a FB status several days ago. He wrote: "On my way back to campus from lunch at home, I saw a young man praying...down by the river, down on his knees, almost hidden by tall grass and reeds. At first glimpse, I thought he was fishing. But there was no pole, no tackle box. Just hands knotted and pressed to his chin. It affected me more than I would have thought possible."
I'm not entirely sure what this means and just how it affected Keith. But I think the irony here, for me, and why this status has given me such pause is that, for me, Keith is that person. The person I see praying, down on his knees. It's true. I've seen him, quite literally, kneeling in prayer more times than I can count. He's that person sending 3:00 p.m. reminders, asking, "What are you praying about today?"
But beyond just the prayer, he writes. He shares his heart. He teaches. He loves. He serves. I've seen him attempt to openly live out his faith, despite tremendous heartache and loss over the past 18 months. But that was to be expected, really, since if already seen him living out that faith for the past 8+ years.
One of Keith's friends commented on that status: "The faith of one expressed openly is a tremendously powerful motivator for others who hold dear a faith of their own." I couldn't have said it better myself. To see someone so consistently attempt to live out their faith--in good times as well as bad--is a powerful motivator for someone like me, as I try to live out a faith of my own.
To see this in a dear friend is a remarkable blessing.
And it has affected me more than I would have thought possible.
Happy birthday, KB, and God bless.