Inspiring Colleagues to the Rescue

In this guest blog, Daniel Kessel talks about the unexpected ways his colleagues have helped him, even beyond the office.

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Mysterious Ways assistant editor Daniel Kessel's father's car-themed birthday

Today's guest blogger is Mysterious Ways assistant editor Daniel Kessel.

As an editor for Mysterious Ways, I often feel blessed to be surrounded by an amazing crew. They’ve had my back and helped me in ways I never would have anticipated, even outside the office.

Last Saturday in New Jersey, at my dad’s surprise 50th birthday party, everyone in the family breathed a sigh of relief. Big parties like that mean lots of work. Months of planning. Luckily, I’d had a couple of unexpected encounters with colleagues that gave me exactly what I needed to pitch in:

Design Inspiration
While everyone was in Jersey doing the heavy lifting, I wondered how I could contribute to the party. My colleague Doug, an assistant art director, happened to be giving me some pointers on how to use Photoshop at the time. His lessons sparked an idea. Why not use my newfound skills to take charge of and design the invitations? After work, I found a photo of Dad standing next to his favorite vehicle, an orange Dodge Charger. That fit the party’s automotive theme. I came up with a couple of car-inspired puns, added the details and enclosed the whole scene in a checkered-flag border. The homemade invitations did the trick, all thanks to a colleague’s perfectly timed tutorial. Thanks, Doug!

The Perfect Gift
“So, what did you get him?” asked my fellow Mysterious Ways editor Diana the day before the party. “Dads can be hard to shop for.” She was right—dads tend not to ask for much, mine included. I still hadn’t bought the gift, but I did have a plan: I’d wander up to Little Italy, find a bakery and get him a box of authentic desserts. As I told Diana, cannolis are his favorite. “No way!” she exclaimed. “That’s exactly what I got my dad for his birthday!” Her dad even had a favorite Little Italy bakery that’s famous for its cannolis. With a real-life dad’s seal of approval, I knew I wasn’t being steered in the wrong direction. Thanks, Diana!

Dad had a great birthday, mostly thanks to the rest of my family. But with the help of my wonderful colleagues, I was able to do my part, too. God often does surround us with the right crew—wouldn’t you agree?

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