"Why do people cry or get sad as soon as people find out that people die?" she asked. "I mean, I know they will miss them, but shouldn't they be happy for them first?"
"I guess most of us are just more selfish than you are, my love."
The small things he did live hugely in my mind. That he was a good steward to the Earth, through his own gardening and through the Earthkeeping Team at our church planted the seed of wanting to be a better steward to the Earth myself. His stewardship toward people, from donating a portion of his harvest to a food pantry to the genuine care he showed for all inspire me to be more giving of my time, my talents, my possessions, and myself.
One memory filled my mind as I contemplated the impact Pastor Brau had on my life. It was a precious ordinary moment. After worship one Sunday, Pastor Brau, placing his hand on my shoulder, asked, "How are you doing. I mean how are you really doing?" I could tell he wasn't expecting, nor would he be content with, an "I'm fine, and you?" response. As I told him of my struggles with psoriatic arthritis, he asked many questions, letting me know it was my option to answer or not, as he didn't want to ask things too personal. His genuine interest in learning more about the disease attacking my body and concern for my total well-being deeply touched my heart. Knowing that he meant it when he said he would include me in his prayers gave me great comfort. It was a short coffee-hour conversation, but the love and care radiating from his soul left my soul at peace and my spirits buoyed.
I will forever remember the twinkle in Pastor Brau's eyes as he shared his knowledge, his talents, and his loving kindness with others. His bounteous spirit has forever left its mark on my soul.