She turns 101 this month.  And she has a loveliness so unique that it's hard to describe.  For the purposes of anonymity (though I'm quite sure she isn't much for laptops and blog reading), I'll call her Arlene.  

Today at the Care Center, I was part of a small group who provided music for the monthly birthday celebration.  All the residents who have February birthdays sat at a special table and the rest of the residents sat at their regular spots in the dining hall.  There was a short program with a speaker and then music and treats.

Arlene had a huge helium-filled, flower-shaped balloon tied to her wheelchair today.  She was wearing a lovely pink blouse.  A little background on Arlene: she generally seems a little (well, more than a little) cranky about "being so old."  

Today, she was elated.  I've never seen her so happy.  I'm not sure if it was the oatmeal cookie or her prominent position seated directly in front of the speaker, but something filled her heart with abounding joy today. 

The speaker shared a lovely message on "cleaning out our hearts."  It tied together Valentine's Day, Lent, and all sorts of Bible texts.  There were a few small outbursts during the program from various residents, but those are to be expected.  Then, out of nowhere, Arlene raised her hand.  It was clear she had something quite important to say, even though the speaker was mid-sentence.  She'd couldn't help but interrupt.

"I have a Bible verse to share."

The speaker, with an ever-gracious smile: "Oh, what is that?"

"All things work together for good to those who love the Lord.  I don't know where you find it in the Bible.  But I know it's there."  

I was sitting with my dear pals Florence and Marjorie.  And my eyes filled up to the brim and overflowed with tears of awe.  

Arlene has been on this earth for more than a century.  Can you imagine what this woman has seen and lived and known and dreamed?  And at her party all she wanted to do was interrupt for a few seconds to share some of God's words that are so permanently etched upon her beautiful birthday-girl heart.  

May we all have the courage to interrupt and be interrupted once in awhile.   

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