July 17, 2011

Happy Birthday, Matt!

Today is my brother's birthday! 
Matt is married with a son (who looks EXACTLY like him) and is a youth pastor in New Jersey.  

Matthew and I are the closest in age out of all four of the kids (14 year spread between oldest to youngest).  Because he and I are about 2 years apart and in consecutive grades in school, we were together a lot.  He probably doesn't know this, but I always envied his free spirit, though he drove me crazy too.  We moved around a lot as kids and I always liked knowing that he was in the same school I was.  In high school we had several classes together and ended up on choir trips and retreats together.  It was always nice to know someone was there with me if I needed it!  I won't lie... we had some very rough years, but God helped us love each other through them!  We ended up going to college at the same time and I was thankful then too.  I remember thinking I was ready for something that was just mine, but in the long run I was really glad he came along.  We worked together at several places and ended up at church together too.  Actually, he ended up roommates with my man during our engagement!  Then I got married and he lived right next door.  So for about 25 years, we were always near each other!  I'm still bitter about the fact that he moved to New Jersey two weeks before I had my first child, but we won't go there.

Matt is funny, lighthearted, teachable, compassionate, forgiving, hard working and full of mercy.  He loves the Lord and wants to do right and be glorifying to Him.  My favorite quality (that I envy) about Matt is that he can be with someone of any age - newborn to teen to senior adult - and make them feel like they are the most important person at that moment.  He's so good at interacting with everyone he meets!  He truly has a gift for loving people.

So Happy Birthday, Matt!  Thank you for being a blessing to me and my family.  It's been fun to watch you grow into the godly man you are today!  
I love you, Lissa

3 comments:

Marcy said...

What a precious tribute to your brother. Happy Birthday, Matt!

Matt said...

Thank you doesn't really even begin to express how much this means to me (because you mean the world to me)! Your words really are an expression of grace from the Lord and I'm grateful. I, too, love (love/hate and times during HS...but that's at least mutual) the fact that we were able to spend 25 of our years together :) And while I am sooo blessed to be here to see Jen's kids grow (and even be their youth pastor now...a different kind of blessing) I am so sad I have had to see your amazing kids grow up from "the cheap seats".

Thanks for such a wonderful gift!

I Love You,
Matt

Anonymous said...

This was so beautiful! How precious that a sister can write from the heart such a loving tribute to her brother. I really was touched and don't think anyone could read this and not be! Such love! Happy for you two and your siblings and entire family that you share so much love!