Younger brothers always remind you of at least one thing – YOU are OLDER! We really cannot point fingers at the way we are losing our hair. Two of us cannot talk to the third about “weight gain.” All of us share the same last name. We have not lived near one another in quite a long time. On separate occasions both of my younger brothers lived with Patty and me. Paul while in Seminary. Trent during a summer while in college. Since those two occasions, the closest we have lived to one another has been about 30 minutes. Now, Trent lives some twelve hours north and east and Paul about two hours northeast.
Over the years we have shared a number of experiences. We have had to address the occasional elephant in the room when we did not see eye to eye but were unsure how to broach the subject for fear of hurting the other’s feelings. The passage of time have given us both the shared understanding of our differing perspectives and even more how they seem to coalesce as we get older. We really are great friends. We talk often and yet sometimes not often enough. We all wish Trent, Sandra, Amanda and Emalee were much closer.
Trent, my youngest brother, celebrated his birthday nearly a month ago; just a few days after my own. He is not yet near the magical 40 but closer than he would care to admit. He often reminds me the nearer he gets to a given age, the further I have moved from that same age. I try to find some way to make seven years less of a stretch. But alas, as he hits 40 I will be nearer 50 than 40. And, he will remind me should I get to carried away with my chides. I do wish he were less than a half days drive. Maybe someday.
Paul us much nearer my age. Yet, to hear him speak of it you would think we are “light years” apart. Tomorrow is his “big” day. He will fish, may play golf and certainly remind me his is enjoying life without internet and cell phone on one of the calmest lakes in southwest Missouri. We toured Seminary together. We share the same vocation so from time to time we commiserate regarding the ebbs and flows (euphemism for ups and downs) inherent in what we do as pastors. Much has been made of tomorrow – 6/6/06. Since we are not into those kinds of dates, it is not a day to be feared but rather a day to be celebrated.
If he and Trent could read this message today or tomorrow, I would tell Trent to out-fish and out-golf his much older brother. I would tell Paul, have a great day – Happy Birthday!