Love God, Love Others, Love Myself. Simple, But Not Easy!
So this is 60.
It’s the beginning of a new decade for me. With my future stretched out before me, waiting to see where I’m going and what I’m doing next.
I feel like I’m standing on the precipice of a new life.
I’ve gone to school, made a career, raised my children and now what, Lord?
Sixty sounds old, but I don’t ‘feel’ old.
Sure, I have some aches and pains but my brain still thinks I’m young. Our minds and spirits don’t feel age the same way our bodies do.
My mom used to ask “how old are you in your head?” She called it a Mental Age. She always said she was 18 and lived her life with passion and joy.
I’m 23 in my head. My body may be aging but I still have so many plans.
I also know that God still has things for me to accomplish that I am uniquely qualified to complete.
I feel blessed to have made this milestone when many people never have the privilege of aging. One of my senior clients, when asked how he was doing would say: “I’m on the right side of the grass!”
As I dream and make plans for the future I am learning to love. Love God. Love others. Love myself. I want to be known as someone who loved well. We are living in a conflicted world. We often see the motto “everyone is going through something so just be kind”. Certainly, good words to live by. Simple but not easy.
Jesus told us the greatest commandment is this: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’” (Matthew 22:37-39)
I’ve abbreviated it to two simple steps: Love God, Love Others.
Simple but not easy. Everything else is not my concern, God can sort it out.
As I look back on 60 years, there have been many seasons in my life with great memories, challenges, heartaches, and milestones.
The wonderful years of childhood, learning and growing up. The tumultuous years of adolescence trying to “find myself”. In my adventurous twenties where I found love and attended college not once but twice, I changed career direction. My thirties saw our family expand to three children, a dog, cats, rabbits, and other pets. Working shift work started to wear thin in my forties as our kid's teen years challenged us. In the fifties, we saw changes to our grown family and a major move across the country to start a new life in the West.
Overall, life has been good. But our perspective is also what drives our memories. I could choose to see only the hard times, tears, and challenges or I could choose to remember the joys, laughter, and victories of the years spent with friends and family. My faith journey started in my late teens and has also seen an ebb and flow over the years as my faith has been challenged and tested; at times wavering but always rebounding as God has been faithful.
The Bible tells us that our days are numbered. And the book of proverbs often instructs us to live wisely so our days will be long. No one is guaranteed longevity so I believe we need to cherish each day. Enjoy our friends and family. Love hard and hug harder. Smile through the tears and seek joy in each day. There are clouds in life but there is always a silver lining to be found if we search for it.
So, as I look forward to the next decade of my life and all that it brings, I seek joy and I chose to love. Love God, love others, and love myself.
May you also find peace and blessing in those simple thoughts.