Mad about…Andy

Though our feelings come and go, God’s love for us does not. –C.S. Lewis

Day 113 of 365: Andy Durnell

My friend, Andy, is a charismatic dreamer. Madly in love with his two daughters and with his hand in ten different things all at the same time, this is a former Wabash College “Little Giant” who is gifted at encouraging others. He is pictured below with his talented daughter, Sam, who is a high school senior.

I came to know Andy Durnell through a mutual friend. I had been hobbling around for some time with a bum knee, and that had me grumpy and discouraged. Andy trains all sorts of folks, and I hear he has a special gift with Parkinson’s patients. I have no doubt that he makes a big difference for them all, just as he has for me. Despite my physical limitations, Andy was able to help me build up enough of the muscles around the offending knee that I was able to get moving and live my life much more normally. He’s a great story teller and he distracted me at just the right moments to get me through some of the more challenging sessions. He did such a good job on that bad knee that I actually think it’s now the good knee! HA!

Articulate, funny and a lover of our good and gracious God, Andy does a lot of smiling, even when his own life has moments of struggle. He chooses affirming words, little golden nuggets of encouragements, words of life. If even on our worst days, those moments when we fail or feel blue, we can use our giftedness to breathe life into the day of another, I believe that is what the face of Jesus looks like. I’ve been the lucky recipient of some of that generously offered sunshine, and I am truly grateful to the Lord for giving me such a friend.

I’m not sure exactly what Andy’s plan for his own life might look like today, but I do know that whatever his dream is, God’s got an even bigger one. That’s the way the Lord works, after all. He shapes our tiny plans and makes them something much more, and when we keep talking things out with Him, the Lord makes our dreams one with His own for us.

Andy, God loves your tender, encouraging heart and the beautiful smile you share with those around you!

“Every time you smile at someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person a beautiful thing.” — St. (Mother) Teresa of Calcutta

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