Sunday, September 28, 2014

You're a Good Man, Caleb Lee

I never wanted to be the only girl. I wanted someone to dress up with and play dolls with and have tea parties with. Daniel was too mature for that, and older brothers are supposed to torment you, not hang out with you. But for some reason, God decided I needed Joseph. And then He gave me you.

We have some great memories, don't we? We had the biggest imaginations. Who else would've pretended to be homeless kids with a pastor who owned a pizza parlor? (And why did you have a trash bag?)

How did we ever become Bill Clinton's step kids who got into the spiked punch at the inaugural ball? And I can't think of any other brothers who would willingly be Anastasia and Drizella for a 13th birthday tea party. With ball gowns and high heels to boot. Or how about the time we had a tea party for Grandma, where you inhaled your coffee (just like a boy)?

You really were the cutest kid ever. But you're not a kid anymore. You're 18 now. You're a man. And you're a good one.

I know men in your life have failed you, and you've seen so many weak men and careless men. But you are not those men.

I see your love for God, your dedication to Him. You haven't given up on God, even though life has provided more than one excuse to do so.

You're amazing with kids. They think you're cool because you're genuine. Kids have a sense for that, you know.

You're honest. You aren't afraid to tell things how they are. You give people all the details--not just the ones that make things look better than they actually are.

You are thoughtful and caring. You watch out for the family's cars, and you're considerate of people's feelings. You play Elvis just because LaVita loves it.

You are loyal to the death. We beat on each other occasionally, but I know that you would fight for me in a heartbeat. I trust you infinitely.

You are a gentleman. The world needs more guys like you. Guys who are polite to women, and appreciate girls for their brains instead of their rumps. And your manners are friendly and gracious--even when you pretend they don't exist.

You are funny. Your jokes and stunts are truly hilarious, without trying to be, which makes them funnier. I have no doubt that you could write the speech on "The Appropriation of Farting in Public Places", and no one would find it inappropriate.

 You work hard, even when no one appreciates it, or when it may all crash and burn someday. You rise to the occasion as a dependable and tireless worker.

Now I know you probably think I'm being silly, but I'm serious. I don't exactly know how to say this, but I want you to know that you're a good brother and an even better friend. Don't ever let anyone tell you differently. And I don't have any profound advice for you, but I give you David's speech to Solomon. He says everything that I mean to say:

"Now, my son, may the Lord be with you; and may you prosper, and build the house of the Lord your God, as He has said to you. Only may the Lord give you wisdom and understanding, and give you charge concerning Israel, that you may keep the law of the Lord your God. Then you will prosper, if you take care to fulfill the statutes and judgments with which the Lord charged Moses concerning Israel. Be strong and of good courage; do not fear nor be dismayed." 
1 Chron. 22:11

So, happy birthday. Go be 18.  Get out of my seat. Stop eating my chips. Don't do anything I wouldn't do. Yes, I know that leaves a lot you could do. Shut up.

I love you, babe. 

It's your birthday. I can say what I want.


  1. brothers are awesome, and this post is lovely...

    1. Yep, brothers are pretty awesome...when they're not harassing you about turbo-charging your Honda. :-) And thanks.