Today is my 36th birthday. Happy Birthday to me- I'm on the "other" side of the mid-thirties, inching closer to... you know what comes next. Wow.
It's ok though... truly, I'm ok! The reason... well, first let me admit, I always imagined getting older as equating to- losing purpose in life. Getting depressed. I mean... NOTHING, at all, to look forward to. Wrinkles. Gray hair. No hair... bald!
Yes indeed, I do now have a few wrinkles. I do now have a few gray hairs. BUT... I also now have a "richness" in my life that I never imagined. In fact, I have more purpose now than I ever imagined. I'm needed more now than I ever imagined! AND... I'm, also, more at peace now than ever before! I know God better. I know my husband better. I know myself better! 36 is actually feeling pretty good! Accept, of course, for the occasional stiffness I feel in the mornings shortly after waking and the "sometimes" fasciitis in the feet. (Girlfriends-we've had this discussion!)
I'm always amazed at what can happen in a year's time! That's why we can't completely plan out our lives, too far in advance... we CAN set goals for ourselves, but we never truly know what will happen in a year's time. That's kind of exciting- don't you think? When I turned 35, for example, NEVER did I imagine we would be adopting a 9-year-old girl from Russia! One observation however- and I'm sure if you think about it, you'll find it true of your own life... many things that I spoke about either as a child, teen, or early 20-something have happened! For example, when Kevin and I were dating, both of us mentioned we would like to live in the Carolinas. Check! We wanted to live in a brick house. Check! And Kevin thought it would be "cool" to adopt, since "there are so many kids out there who are in need of homes." Almost check!
Another thought about this adoption. When we first found Sveta's photo, online, back in February, and decided to pursue the adoption of her, never did we imagine how many people this would affect, other than ourselves and our two children. I am now beginning to see how God is using it for His glory! We have two sets of grandparents who are excited to be grandparents again! (Thank you, Grammie and Bump-Bump -AND- Mammaw and Pappaw!) We have great-grandparents praying for us. We have our siblings who are supportive, encouraging, and willing to help out! We have friends praying for us! We knew we were loved, and now, we know we are BLESSED! (Love you all!)
Additionally, family and friends have shared that this adoption has encouraged them to seek the Lord and read what the Bible says about orphans. Wow! Praise God! - - I've watched my husband, who rarely shares his personal feelings/opinions/thoughts, etc. talk with people about how we were moved by a message, at church, pertaining to adoption and how he felt the Holy Spirit working within him, to adopt. Again, praise God! - - And, one more to share... I made a new friend recently while working freelance at P&G, and she confided that she talks with her husband about our adoption in an effort to open his heart to it and God, in general. GOD You are so good!
In conclusion, I'm glad that God has continued to "refine" me year after year, leading up to now, 36 years! I look forward to more refinement, as we continue on this journey He has put us on. And, I'm always amazed at how God works in us and through us, for His glory.
Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.