I'm in my last week of my 27th year of life. Weird.
Twenty eight seems big to me. I remember being a little girl and telling my Kindergarten teacher "Oh, yeah, my dad is 28!" Maybe thats why it seems impossible for me to have reached that age.
My enneagram "four" rages on my birthday with so many emotions good, and bad.
Side note: If you're against the enneagram, I encourage you to take it for what it is (a personality test) and learn more about yourself through it and use it to love your neighbor better. I don't let it define me or my faith, but it sure does help me understand my heart, and the hearts around me, so much more fully.
ANYWHO: Birthdays. Why do they hit me so passionately? I don't fear growing older. I don't fear wrinkles or gray hair. Not to get dark, but I don't even fear death, as strange as that sounds. I fully understand and am confident that the death of my earthly body means eternity in heaven with Jesus for my soul. What a gift. Yet, every birthday, I'm a happy and sad, teary-eyed mess.
I think its for two main reasons:
1) I am so grateful for the life I have lived thus far.
2) I am also incredibly grateful for what is to come.
There is so much grace in both reasons: grace given in the past, and hope given for the future.
I was chatting with some friends this week about a point of view I hold that could be considered morbid to some, but for me, it drives me to a special acknowledgment of gratitude, motivation towards action, and an awareness to meticulously cherish each day I'm given on this side of heaven.
I explained to them how if I live to be 78, I have 50 years left. That's if I am given the gift of fifty more years: Fifty summers. Fifty Christmases. Fifty times watching the leaves turn my favorite fall colors. Fifty more super bowl halftime shows to watch. Fifty trips around the sun that hold so much possibility...and that gives my heart an unexplainable hope. Even more than that? This life is just a blink of an eye.
Its time to wake up and celebrate the gift that is our lives. There are recipes to be made, people to meet, children to have, music to be written, ideas to be sparked, flowers to be planted, sonic drinks to be ordered, books to be read, and so much more wisdom to be fostered. We have so many reasons to cultivate a posture of gratitude...we have so many reasons to put our phones down and sit at a table with friends, strangers, sinners, and saints...and we have so many reasons to share our hope in Jesus with others...because there is so much hope in tomorrow.
And so much hope in birthdays.