I never realized how much I care about age. I pay very close attention to age. I just may be to the point of obsessed with age. E pointed this out to me once saying, “Whenever you tell me about someone I don’t know, you always mention their age in relation to you.” I thought he was exaggerating until I caught myself several times describing someone by speaking of their age. Why do I always bring up someone’s age? Does age matter? Age is something that qualifies or disqualifies us for anything: discounts for events, special meals, driver’s licenses, the privilege to watch any movie, buy alcohol, and gamble….it’s all about your age. Or is it?
Our culture expresses great importance in age. Young people feel the need to grow up quickly, influencing the way they dress, speak, and act. And old people feel the need to stay young longer, influencing the way they dress, speak, and act.
What is age?
Age is a way of measuring human life by years.
As I count the number of years I’ve been given, I can’t help but smile. Because twenty-three years ago, when the doctors told my mom that she shouldn’t tell others about the pregnancy because she wouldn’t carry the fetus to term, I’m pretty sure God was laughing. He had something up His sleeve. It was me: with all my affinities, quirks, and passions. Nine months later, wrapped up in eight pounds of squishy baby fat and a cute bow in my black hair, my life was full with possibilities. Hope and promise held high as one contemplated my future.
Age is a length of time during which a being or thing has existed.
Each person has an age. Each person has an existence. But I don’t want to just exist another year. I want to live. I want to breathe in deeply. I want to celebrate, dance, and delight in good things. I want to rejoice, give thanks, and sing loudly in the shower. I want to live. I want to run. I want to share, laugh, and pray. I want to be known by my love–deep, unselfish, overflowing from being filled by the Source of love. I don’t want to be obsessed with age. Because this life isn’t about the birth date, or the expiration date. Life is about the dash. The line between the two dates on a gravestone, the line that represents my entire life. What am I doing with that dash? Am I just existing? Am I wishing away precious time? Am I complaining? Am I living in fear?
Or am I getting my hands dirty? Am I giving generously? Am I pouring myself out for the sake of others? Am I learning and growing and changing? Am I appreciating this gift of a dash we call life? I am more than eight pounds of squishy baby fat. And I don’t have black hair, nor a bow in my hair. But I believe today that my life is full with possibilities. I am holding hope and promises high as I think about my future.
With deep gratitude, I celebrate who I am today. I celebrate God’s faithfulness in my life. And I celebrate the uncertainty of the dash I’m vibrantly living.
Happy Natal Day to me!