That was a sigh of relief, I had found all of my birthday cards, and could commence writing my thank you notes, thanking each family who had taken an evening of their week to come celebrate with me the passage of yet another year that the Lord had granted to me. But being the distractible fellow that I often am, I sat at my desk and pondered the emotions of the last few minutes: concern, then panic, followed by hurried searching, and finally sweet relief as I found my treasures. All for some pieces of paper with only a few sentences penned on their smooth surfaces. But all were well spent emotions.
Long after the party is done, the money is spent, and the gifts are either lost, out grown (that one doesn't happen to me anymore) or worn out, I will still have the cards that people have given to me. Whether they were hastily written in the car on the way to the party - thoughts off the top of the author's head, or carefully formulated words of encouragement and wisdom written days in advance, I cherish them all. They show that those who penned them value their recipient enough to show their love and appreciation in old fashioned hand writing, long or short, in depth, profound, or a simple I love you.
Though they may not say we love you in so many words isn't that what birthday cards say? Words of Encouragement may not be my primary Love Language for showing love (and an area in which I need to grow), but it certainly is one that makes my heart rejoice. To know that others love me in ways that I know I don't deserve, it's almost too much joy to contain.
To all of you who have written to me, thank you. It means more to me than I can express.