Tomorrow I will be sixty years old. I think I’ve been contemplating this birthday ever since I turned 59. And now that it is here, I’m still struggling to come to terms with it. Sixty today isn’t old, but it’s like the “young part” of your older years. I’ve been saying the struggle is not about facing my own mortality. I’ve been lying. It is about that, and so much more. Have I lived well? What about all the wrong choices I can’t go back and change?
We were blessed with a beautiful new grandson this week, and over the next seven months, we will have three more. That will bring us up to nine! And while I’m excited and happy for all my children (and proud), I’m wondering if it’s possible to be a part of their lives, especially with the distance in miles. Will I even to see them all grow up? Will they even know me?
It’s sobering to consider these things, but at the same time it’s oddly freeing. The thing is we should always examine our lives to see if we are living on purpose; in other words, living intentionally. For me that means putting God first, seeking him, sitting at his feet, and inviting the Spirit to take control. I know this is why Jesus says we have to die to self daily. He knows our propensity to take back our own lives and be our own gods. And I’m not very good at being my own god.
So yesterday I had some special time with the Lord to talk about my birthday. I saw myself swimming in the ocean, deep under the water, struggling to get to the surface so I could breathe some precious air. It was taking every ounce of energy I had to keep swimming. But then I heard the muffled sounds above the water and saw light begin to filter through. And as I redoubled my efforts to make it to the top, suddenly strong arms reached down and lifted me out of the water.
I knew the Lord was giving me a picture of my struggling to carry weight that is not mine to carry. And as always, when I turn back and look at him, he comes for me. There were some tears in my time with him. There was truth spoken, some of it hard to hear. And there was grace, much grace. “Let go. Trust me with those you love. I’ve got them. Your husband needs you. Someone needs to know me through your writing. I have so much for you in this new season, my daughter. I want you to be a light for me. Let go, and then you will be able to truly love.”
Last night I had a wonderful birthday dinner with my man, a beautiful evening in every way. Today I will share a family birthday party with my 11-year-old granddaughter with food on the grill and cake and a sea of toddlers running around the backyard and splashing in the kiddie pool. And I will get to hold my new days-old grandson. I could not be more blessed. Awwwww….now I can breathe.
Thank you, Lord. I surrender to you…..again.