Paul Greenberg

"Kirby always exhibits respect for those people he has to lead out of our building. He never degrades them. I'll find him out on the sidewalk 30 minutes later talking to them about their faith and about where they are in life. Kirby is not an ordained minister. Kirby is a man who shares his faith - especially with those people he considers down and out."

It's as if he were put here for just that purpose. And found himself in just the right place at just the right time to do just the right thing. There are no coincidences, as a rabbi once told me.

"The One Thing You Must Do" is the title of a poem by Rumi, the Persian mystic who wrote in the 13th century in the Sufi tradition:

"There is one thing in this world that you must never forget to do. If you forget everything else and not this, there's nothing to worry about; but if you remember everything else and forget this, then you will have done nothing in your life.

"It is as if a king has sent you to some country to do a task, and you perform a hundred other services, but not the one he sent you to do. So human beings come to this world to do particular work. That work is the purpose, and each is specific to the person. If you don't do it, it's as though a knife of the finest tempering were nailed into a wall to hang things on. For a penny an iron nail could be bought to serve for that."

Blessed is the man who's found his calling, his mission, his particular work, the one thing he must do - and does it. And so blesses us all.


Paul Greenberg

Pulitzer Prize-winning Paul Greenberg, one of the most respected and honored commentators in America, is the editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.