It’s my birth—day! It’s my birthday!
It’s been a mixed bag of emotions leading up to this day. Gotta be honest with you….on one hand I’m very grateful; actually humbled at the care and concern that this Big Holy, Majestic God has toward me to keep me and on the other hand, I’m almost in disbelief that I am now 51 years old! YIKES…age is just a number right?
Typically, I write to encourage you, to strengthen you and to prompt you to trust God and this blog is no different; but I intent to be more transparent than normal, as well. Perhaps, I pray you will find a word, a thought or principle that will inspire and encourage you.
I decided to do a collage of pics of me as my birthday gift to me from me. I wrestled with the thought at first, and even now, that it may be perceived differently than my intention; but I did it anyway, I wanted to and it’s my gift to me that I wanted to share with others. And with every pic that I put together; I looked at my face at different ages and stages of my life. I looked deep into the pic that was looking back at me. Humbled. Accepting that I am a miracle! A miracle because I lived, my mom choose to keep me against all odds, including her own. I was her third baby and I too came with no evidence of any father anywhere in her life. She had 3 illegitimate children. I hate that word; its definition is almost a curse. It’s the opposite of legitimate; which is accepted and authorized. But, I use it to confirm and support mine and my sibling’s existence. Her children were born in the 50’s & 60’s in a small, predominately white community in South Dakota. She was a minority woman with minimal education and on a misguided quest to find love. I can’t judge; God knows I’ve done that most of my life and it’s fruitless and hurtful.
I don’t know much, if anything factual about the man who my mother was with when I was conceived. And my heart breaks now that I’m a woman with children to think about the fear, pain, regret, anger and every other emotion that my mother must have lived with for 9 months as her belly grew with me.
A friend, a young woman who loves God told me about this Youtube video that ministered to her. I have been listening and soaking: here’s part of what God is saying: “Gods heart toward you is beyond fantasy. Logic cannot comprehend God’s love toward you. God desires to fulfill His plan in your life. God delights in your life. He rejoices in walking hand in hand with you through your life, that you may be full of thanksgiving and gratitude. And that you will see yourself as God sees you. And that you would rejoice in the splendor of His foundation in your life and you will know who you are in Him as He proclaims your identity fully.”
WOW! That “you” is you and it’s me and it’s for every beautiful creation that He created in human life. I am yet attempting to understand the totality of God’s love in my life and toward me. The mistakes, wrong turns and disappoints will attempt to sabotage my realization of His love, but I am desperately trying to believe that God’s love is beyond anything and everything that I could know or do.
So today, 51 years after my first breath, my choice to be grateful is more real than ever. It’s not vanity to love yourself. It’s not pride to delight in yourself and when you think those thoughts, it is not from God and it will do exactly what the enemy intended it to do…tear you down and underestimate your worth...my worth.
Look at that beautiful baby in the picture collage that I made, as she grew up, she too desired to find worth and love and acceptance…happiness. I took wrong turns and went through some dark valley’s, but God knew that, even when I was unaware.
I officiated my mother’s Memorial Service this past June and so today I don’t have the opportunity to celebrate my birth day with her. To call her and share in her story of my life, as I said, it’s a mixed bag of emotions today. My mother and I didn’t have a healthy relationship, and I never felt compelled to call her or reach out to her to celebrate my birth day with her. I never felt led to acknowledge the trials that came along with my birth with my mom, or to tell her thanks, thanks for life. I could be regretful, but instead, I will be grateful. Grateful that she endured beyond herself and gave birth to me!
That’s part of my story, thanks for reading it. I encourage you to study your story, tell your story! It’s therapeutic and enlightening to look closely at your pictures. Study them and remember the times of your life, and perhaps you will find the faithfulness of God and also see the strength that you have, that brought you to this point in time.
It’s my birth-day…it’s my birthday!