73 is the new 43….

I just spent ten glorious days with two of my favorite people: my mom and dad. They both turned 73 this year; but, you would never know it. Their genuine zest for life and overall health could put me and some of my friends to shame. I have always admired them; but find the older that I get the more that admiration grows. I want to be like them when I grow up. 😉 So, I thought that I would share some things that I have observed about them.

Put God first in everything you do: your life, marriage, home, vocation and decisions. Do everything for His Glory. Remember it’s not about you. It’s about Him. Always.

Surround yourself with things that you love. My parents have pictures of family everywhere. They also have family heirlooms, cows, crosses, lighthouses, positive affirmations and other things that they love around their house.

Take time to prepare a good meal and sit down to eat it family-style.

Climbing stairs is a good thing. My parents house on the river is only accessible by a flight of stairs. And their bedroom is up another flight of stairs.

Spend some time gardening. Both of my parents are Master Gardeners and they love to grow flowers, vegetables, and herbs, which means they spend time outside tending to their garden. (Oh and those good meals mentioned above involve lots of homegrown, seasonal vegetables.)

Give back to your community. Volunteer and promote commerce, fellowship and service within your city. Roll up your sleeves and work when help is needed.

Games are good for your soul and a great way to keep your mind active and alert. My mom is an avid bridge player and is involved in playing cards each week with other women. We love to play board games when we get together as a family.

Take time to sit outside and soak in God’s creation. Watch birds. Enjoy the sunshine. Float on the river. Watch stray kittens play. Ha!

And no matter your age, keep dreaming. Look forward to what God has in store for you next. Talk about the future, make plans to travel and imagine amazing things for your life. In every season. You see, eternal life begins now in Christ. What are you waiting for?

Be joyful!

I have seen the burden God has placed on us all. Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God. Ecclesiastes 3:10‭-‬13 NLT

A Room full of Teenagers…..

Happening right now in our family room is my daughter’s 16th birthday party. There are 20 of them, watching a movie, eating burgers, fries and an unnatural amount of sugar. My husband and I have escaped with the angel dog to our bedroom, where we are eating skittles on our bed, drawing straws on who is the next one to “make an appearance” and make sure that things are on the “up and up.”

This morning, we were also surrounded by teenagers, this time at our church, where we attended a funeral for an eighteen year old high school senior, who died unexpectedly at his school less than a week ago. The young man who died was a strong Christian, who lived his short life to the honor and glory of his Father in heaven. He ran his race and was called home and heard his Savior say, “well done, good and faithful servant.”

Some times God provides sharp contrast in our lives. The room full of teenagers in my house right now make me crazy in my brain, most of the time. Yet, one of the boys looked up innocently earlier and said, “do you have any new batteries mom?” He is not my son. technically. But, he sees me as a mom. What a privilege!

Sharp contrasts.

There was a time in my life when I didn’t think that being a mom was going to be part of my story. There was a time in my life when the thought of a room full of teenagers was an unfulfilled dream. But, my God is faithful and His timing is perfect.

So, I consider time with each one of these teenagers a blessing. I want our home to be a place where they can gather and steal away from the pressures of life. I will cherish each day with my own teenage daughter because time is fleeting and life is short.

Oh and my husband drew the short straw!

Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.
    Remind me that my days are numbered—
    how fleeting my life is.
You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.
    My entire lifetime is just a moment to you;
    at best, each of us is but a breath.”  Psalm 39:4-5