Today is what I called a super-birthday-day. I have 3 close family members that were born today and each year between the 3 of them this day becomes a birthday extravaganza. As I've been thinking about each of these people today I've started realizing how much they improve me as a person. They make me a better "Sarah." Each one of them has amazingness that is just who they are and I find myself thinking that I need to be more like them.
The youngest of the 3 is my nephew Cole who is turning 8 today. Let me paint a picture of who he is. This is the kid who has white blonde hair and a skater haircut. He wears his clothes as if he is a mini skater model and exudes cool, but...he has not a lick of cocky-ness or "I'm too cool-ness" about him. In fact, to look at him you always see smiles and a face full of laughter. Cole is the kid who was telling jokes before other kids his age even knew what a joke was. He wants to make those around him laugh and have fun and I am always thrilled when I get to be one of those close to him.
Next is my sister-in-law Nicole. I wont tell her age but she is about my age, married to my husbands brother and has 2 beautiful daughters. When I think about Nicole there is something that comes to my mind that I wish so badly came to peoples minds when they thought of me. Nicole is love. I have never seen her angry, I've never seen her lash out, I've never seen her say no to helping someone. She gushes love. She gives love. She is the person that is not afraid to affirm you. Ugh! What a wonderful gift she is to our family!
Finally, today is my Dad's birthday. I've always struggled to have the gifts that my Dad has but it seems as if his giftings and mine are like the two ends of a magnet that oppose each other. I will keep trying though. My Dad is the person who makes you feel special. Everyone. Not just those he knows but everyone, even the lady at the grocery store or the man at the gas station. My Dad's face is a constant smile and what's so amazing and rare about it is that you can see it is genuine. If you are feeling isolated and lonely and nervous in a room full of people, my Dad is the one who finds you and makes you feel welcome. If you are pouring your heart out, my Dad is the one who listens to you with his face towards you not turning and looking for a way out. My Dad is an encourager and I can't even imagine where I would be or where my confidence would be if he weren't my Dad.
Today I'm thinking of each of these loved ones and praying for each of them but I'm also praying that the Lord would make me more like them, the laughing face of Cole, the warm love of Nicole, and the genuine encouragement of my Dad. Even though today is their birthday, these are the gifts they are giving to me. These people make me better :)