Let’s just go ahead and get it out of the way…It’s my birthday today and I’m 33. It’s strange how each birthday can take on it’s one character. I loved my 13th birthday fondu surprise party and the repeat at 21 but with alcohol. Somehow the 20’s seem like a fuzzy memory. 30 was fun and no big deal but I had a great party with the very important people in my life. 31 was a bit sad because well, now I was IN my 30’s. 32 came and went and now 33 I’m feeling a bit introspective.
These thoughts all began when I attended a recent memorial service for a very Godly man. The service began with a slideshow of Ray’s life. As my eyes focused on a photo of him praying over an African woman lying on a stretcher I began to cry and asked myself, “What am I doing? What difference do I make in other’s lives?” I listened as people told stories of how Mr. Walls made them feel safe enough to allow themselves to heal from past hurts. You see, Ray made a difference by giving his life way and investing in the lives of people all over this blue and green ball we call home. What do I do to give my life away? I left that service grateful for having known such an amazing man and challenged to change my life.
Then, as my folks and I watched a corny Christmas movie over Chinese takeout I was struck again with this idea of, “What am I doing with my life to help others?” In this movie a little girl had cancer and her dad wasn’t sure she’d live to see another Halloween, Thanksgiving, or Christmas. He began trying to move the holidays forward so she could enjoy them. The town rallied and made that happen for her…don’t worry, she lived. But as I watched I wished I could somehow step out of my life and watch it from afar…like a movie…to see if I helped better other people’s lives.
As we drove to Savannah for Thanksgiving we listened to my new birthday CD from my awesome sister (yes, I open birthday presents early). I was learning the foreign words and enjoying the new tune when these 4 words hit me. “We’re here for You”. Yes, I’m here to worship and glorify an amazing God, but what do I do to show other people that HE is here for THEM through ME?
Awhile back I wrote a declaration of how I want my life to look by living my passions. In that proclamation I help people and I make a difference. When I think about it’s beautiful and it feels like me. I get excited to see those things happen but I let life get in the way. I let work take over and I neglect relationships with the people I love. I walk by the people in need because, well I’m busy and I have list of umpteen things that need to be crossed off. So now, IT’S TIME! It’s time to close the computer, read that declaration, call those things forth in my life, and look at this world and begin to make a difference. I do it not for me but the people who need to know HE is there for THEM. I do it so that other’s lives can be better and I do it so people can heal. I do it so that when I have my “going home party” (and it better be a party) people will leave challenged to make a difference and make this beautiful world even more gorgeous through their love.
So, today I’m 33. I realize it’s never to late to begin to make a difference. Whether your 15 or 99 we all have something to give, we were all put here for a reason, so go out there and give it away to make someone else’s life better. I think 33 is going to be a pretty AWESOME year.
Surprise birthday flowers from my totally sweet, awesome, adorable, thoughtful boyfriend who wants to give his life away too to make the lives of others better.
Until next time…
Oh, and for all your flower needs GO TO LIZ STEWART!!!!!!! (no, we’re not related but she’s the bomb!)