The Gift of Lee

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”

James 1:17

Sixty years ago today my best friend who also just happens to be my wife too was born into this world. Though she will be the one receiving gifts today as we celebrate her birthday, her special day also serves as a great reminder to me and our family of the many gifts we have in her. It’s not a cliche to say, “the world is a better place because she was born” because its true. As the book of James declares of every good and perfect gift, they come from God in heaven above. So, even on her birthday where we try to lavish her with gifts, God is also blessing me and our family reminding us all again today of the wonderful treasures we have found in her.  

I obviously haven’t known my wife from birth but God has and even while yet she was in her mothers womb God was fashioning her for me, for us. Though she was born on the East coast in Portsmouth New Hampshire on May 3, 1961, as life often does, God moved her to the place where one day we would meet. We grew up on the opposite sides of the same town and ran in different circles but God knew the perfect time and place to gift her to me. If my memory serves me right we have shared 39 birthdays since we first met and with each year I have grown to love and appreciate her more.

I am so thankful for my wife and am looking forward to celebrating her today. All of our children are in town to celebrate their Mom along with all her greatest treasures of all, our wonderful grand babies.  My wife loves a good party as she enjoys being around and with people. She is a great listener and one of the things I enjoy most about her is her laugh. My wife loves to laugh. When she is happy her smile can light up a room. I should know as it was the first thing that drew me to her when we first met. My wife has a big heart so it’s only fitting that she enjoys collecting them. We can spend hours walking along the beach looking for heart shaped rocks while on vacation. Hearts of all kinds decorate our home. You can find them all over the place. In pictures and in stones, pillows and colored paper, some made of wood, even a few rings and necklaces too. Yes, today on her 60th birthday I am reminded of the beautiful heart God has placed within her.

Yet of all the qualities and characteristics my wife has, which are many, one thing stands out above them all. Besides being stunningly beautiful, smart and funny, she’s loving and caring, kind and considerate, crafty as well as dedicated and consistent. To say she is organized and orderly would be an understatement. She knows how to use a skillet and a skill saw and yet the greatest gift I have found in her all these years is her love for Jesus. It was the thing that first attracted me to her… besides her beautiful smile and blue eyes, curly hair, and freckles.

Yes, even though it’s my wife’s 60th birthday today and we have countless reasons to celebrate the gift of her, the one that deserves the greatest recognition today is her virtue. Proverbs 31 describes my wife to the tee, and is why my children and I with joy rise up and bless her today. She is very deserving of the praise. Happy Birthday Ishtee, enjoy your birthday!  

    10      Who can find a virtuous wife?
    For her worth is far above rubies.
    11      The heart of her husband safely trusts her;
    So he will have no lack of gain.
    12      She does him good and not evil
    All the days of her life.
    13      She seeks wool and flax,
    And willingly works with her hands.
    14      She is like the merchant ships,
    She brings her food from afar.
    15      She also rises while it is yet night,
    And provides food for her household,
    And a portion for her maidservants.
    16      She considers a field and buys it;
    From her profits she plants a vineyard.
    17      She girds herself with strength,
    And strengthens her arms.
    18      She perceives that her merchandise is good,
    And her lamp does not go out by night.
    19      She stretches out her hands to the distaff,
    And her hand holds the spindle.
    20      She extends her hand to the poor,
    Yes, she reaches out her hands to the needy.
    21      She is not afraid of snow for her household,
    For all her household is clothed with scarlet.
    22      She makes tapestry for herself;
    Her clothing is fine linen and purple.
    23      Her husband is known in the gates,
    When he sits among the elders of the land.
    24      She makes linen garments and sells them,
    And supplies sashes for the merchants.
    25      Strength and honor are her clothing;
    She shall rejoice in time to come.
    26      She opens her mouth with wisdom,
    And on her tongue is the law of kindness.
    27      She watches over the ways of her household,
    And does not eat the bread of idleness.
    28      Her children rise up and call her blessed;
    Her husband also, and he praises her:
    29      “Many daughters have done well,
    But you excel them all.”
    30      Charm is deceitful and beauty is passing,
    But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.

Proverbs 31:10-30


Michael Osthimer




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