Friday, January 23, 2004


My middle brother, Derek, called me last night. This might seem like a common occurrence to most folks, but it's not for me.

When I told Amy she asked with incredulity, "Your brother Derek?"

Derek is a good man, but no one would ever confuse him with Phil Donahue or Alan Alda. He's not exactly touchy-feely. We've never really been very close although we have been in contact a little more in recent years because his dear wife, Mary Kay, has had her own health struggles. Nonetheless usually I end up talking with Mary Kay when I call. If Derek gets on the line at all, the conversation is fairly terse. Derek is a man of few words and we don't call each other just to shoot the breeze. In fact, the majority of my communications with Derek over the years have been in the form of email. I write trying to catch him up on our lives and asking if everything is okay with his family. His email responses invariably resemble telegrams of old, "ALL WELL - DEREK".

When my cell phone rang last night and I realized it was Derek calling I feared bad news; however he only wanted to know how Amy and I were doing . I waited expecting him to pass off the phone and say, "Well, here's Mary Kay" but then he told me she wasn't home. He initiated the call on his own.

When I told Amy that she again said, "Derek, your brother?"

The last few months have been challenging for Amy and me...the last few weeks certainly have as well. However I suspect a few months from now I'm going to look back on this time and think how much better life is...because of what we've been through.

God, I pray that is so.

Proverbs 19:21

Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails.