Sunday, May 4, 2008

Happy Birthday Christopher!

My sister Laurie, nephew Benjamin, and brother Christopher at his birthday brunch

I went to celebrate my amazing older brother's birthday in Greensboro, North Carolina. I have always admired my brother. He has walked through so much, but has one of the most incredible attitudes of anyone I know because his eyes are set on eternity, where every wrong will be made right and there will be no more suffering. One of my favorite memories with Christopher is when he needed to be reminded that there is more to our story than what we experience in the here and now, so he asked me to read him the end of C.S. Lewis' The Last Battle. The last paragraph of The Last Battle says:

"And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before."
Sometimes we all need to be reminded that this world is not our home. We were made for eternity, and something in our hearts will always ache for the beauty, intimacy, and fulfilment we will experience when we are finally face to face with the One whose heart we were made for. In Mere Christianity Lewis says, "If we experience desires that no earthly experience can satisfy, the most logical explanation is that we were made for another world. " Christopher's life reminds me that we were made for another world and that this life really is a title page for the real story.

Christopher, I am so glad that you are my big brother. I remember as a teenager you wanted to go into the ministry. I looked up to you, but I did not understand your calling because during my teenage years, I was still in love with the world. God had a different path for your life than vocational ministry, but I want you to know that you minister to so many people with the way you live your life. Now I have found what you found at a young age and also feel the call to ministry- to give my life to Someone and something bigger than myself so that others may discover the profound wisdom of surrendering their life to Him. Thank you for going before me and showing me the paradox of losing one's life to find it.

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