Thanks to Her Majesty and Mr Simmonite

Two very important people in my life celebrate their birthday today.

Of course I will do the thing of sending them a message and leaving something on their Facebook wall, but it was also worth taking this opportunity to declare my gratitude for both in my life.

About Her Majesty

I met Her Majesty (her real name is Josephine, but she’s royalty, so I acknowledge that) ten years ago this year. (So she’s not celebrating her 10th birthday for anyone guessing her age. This should be the end of the parentheses … for the time being.) She helped me settle into life working at the YMCA, which as you should be aware if you follow this blog is the best working experience of my life to date. Her Majesty was a pivotal part of that memorable experience.

Her Majesty is one of those people who can play it cool on the surface whatever else is going on behind the scenes. She’s so cool to the panic and flustering around her, but it is not that she insensitive and unmoved. Within her there is such a passion and compassion for people, there is such a concern for the welfare of others that even writing it down and remembering it makes me very tearful. It’s been a great witness to me.

What’s also tremendously remarkable about her is her commitment to growth. Such is her humility and modesty that she doesn’t always recognise but she has grown in character, stature and maturity in these ten years. She may have been a bit nervous and timid in approaching certain things before, but that has been dealt with clearly in the years. She speaks with an authority and power that is not dependent on volume, but on a certainty that is piercing.

It’s truly an awesome privilege to among those who have met her, talked with her and been able to share aspects of life with her. It’s a great life worth celebrating and I’m incredibly blessed by association with her.

About Mr Simmonite

Leaving Stoke-on-Trent was a big deal. Out in the middle of nowhere and no friend in sight. God placed in my life an amazing friend.

Mr Simmonite is someone who could relate with me. The way he just got on with me was truly impressive. So great at making me feel at ease, able to conjure a smile from me out of nothing. He was the central hub of the best work team I worked with. Down to his honesty, down to his irrepressible charm. Yeah he was good looking, but I never held that against him.

One of the things I will always be thankful for in a friend like Mr Simmonite is being there when people suffer. he was there for me when I was suffering. He was there for me even when he wasn’t doing great himself. He was able to empathise with me and know what I needed at some painful parts of my life.

Sure we shared similar taste in enjoying football and loving being funny, that is a great bond to the friendship. What’s equally fascinating about the guy is that he can make something boring lively and of great interest by the way he communicates it. I love the way he’s blokey and witty and intelligent, with a tremendous heart for what is right. He’s not selfish enough to think that the world revolves around him and he’s never wrong. He’s far too modest in acknowledging what a brilliant guy he is and what he has to offer this world.

I love the man. He is brilliant and it enrages me that people have taken advantage of his good nature. For someone to get me to be enraged about anything is a hallmark of the value on which I place someone. I treasure his friendship as he’s a great friend.

And So …

When I think life sucks and things are bad for me for the things I don’t have, people like Her Majesty and Mr Simmonite – rare people indeed – show me I am very blessed indeed. I trust they will enjoy great things because they are great people!

For His Name’s Sake


C. L. J. Dryden


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