Today is my 47th birthday. I wasn't going to blog about it. In fact, I was pretty much going to ignore it altogether. At this point, I find myself wanting to approach it as a day like any other day.
But today I am officially one year older, and perhaps that is worth at least a pause and a moment's reflection.
I have told my wife and kids that I hope I live a long life. I'd like to grow old with my wife; that is strangely exciting to me. And I'd love to see what my kids will make of their lives. But the truth is, if I died tomorrow I'd die well content with the life I've lived. It is important to me that they know that. There is nothing that quantity of life can add that quality of life has not already given.
The truth is, when I look back on my years so far...and I am being completely honest about this...I feel fortunate beyond my wildest dreams. I don't know why, am completely humbled by it, and sometimes even feel guilty about it...but it seems like my life has been (and continues to be) full of good people and good things to an extent that goes far beyond anything I have ever had any right to expect.
It’s not that there haven’t been some very painful times. Believe, there have been—so much so that at points I wasn’t sure I’d make it through. But even then people stuck by me and loved me and called forth the best from me when it would have been far easier to turn away.
And it’s not that my life is perfect. Far from it. I’m not yet the person I want to be. In recent years I’ve come to my birthday and thought “Materially, I really do have everything I want to have”. But this year for some reason I can think of lots of things I want, and I struggle with that.
But it’s just that despite the bumps and pitfalls; the mistakes and the shortcomings; the longing sometimes to have it all—or even just more than I really need-- that is unrealistic and unhealthy and even destructive… Despite all these things, I look back at my life and simply find myself overwhelmingly…
Thanks to God and all those who have helped make my life be what it never could’ve been without them. I am deeply grateful.