On Turning 30

Today begins a new decade.
As scary and unbelievable as that has seemed at times, here we are.
Almost everyone I know has had at least some difficulty with the thought of turning 30…and I am no exception.

It just seems like such a big number.
Even though, obviously, it isn’t old, I remember thinking as a child that 30 was ancient.
Practically at death’s door.

I’ve had several people tell me I’m being ridiculous for struggling with and dreading this day.
I’ve heard many say, “Oh, just wait til you get to be my age. Then you can be upset!” (Thanks for that.)
I’d like to think if things were different, I would feel differently about this day.
Of course, that probably isn’t true. We’re never truly satisfied, are we?

I pictured 30 arriving in a different way.
The day would begin with me waking up our children with cuddles and kisses. We would have our morning devotions and pray together at the breakfast table.
Later, they would help their dad make a mess in the kitchen to make the most beautiful birthday cake in the world.
Then, they would hand me a homemade construction paper card and their little voices would sing “Happy Birthday,” and help me blow out the candles.
The day would end as it began, with cuddles, kisses, and prayers.

Reality is very different this morning.

While my heart aches and tears are falling even as I type this, I want you to know that I am so blessed and happy with the life God has given me.
I have had 30 amazing years!

I grew up in a home where I knew nothing but love.
I grew up in a church where I heard nothing but truth.
I was saved as a child by God’s amazing grace!
I went to a Christian school where I met many people who are some of my closest friends today.
I have heard more solid, Biblical preaching in my lifetime than I want to give an account for.
I graduated high school and went to Bible College where I got a wonderful education – inside and outside of the classroom – and there, I met my husband.
I’m able to say that the only real jobs I’ve ever had have been doing exactly what I want to be doing: teaching and working with children.
I graduated college and Justin and I were married a month later.
He began pastoring our sweet church a month after that.
For the past six years, my hubs and I have loved, laughed, prayed, cried, laughed, hoped, sought God, served God, and laughed together.

Yes, my life looks differently today than I imagined it, but it is also beautiful and messy and precious, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
This isn’t the life that I built.
This is the life that God has built for me…and it’s perfect.

Oh, there are pains and scars and a storm cloud that refuses to end, but all these things are the hand of God working in my life.
He knows exactly what it will take for each of us to become more like Jesus, and this trial is what it is taking for me.

How precious it is for me to know that God cares and loves me enough to mess up my plans and dreams to give me His best.
I’d rather be right where I am with the Holy Ghost living in me and Jesus leading me, walking with me, and praying for me than to have a house full of children and not know God.
What would it profit me or the world to have just another family made up of lives unchanged by the Gospel of Jesus Christ?

He is all that matters.
If He can use me and my brokenness to let His light shine to those around me, then it is worth it.
It is worth the unending pain, the tears, and the sleepless nights because He is right there with me to comfort me, wipe away my tears, and speak that peace that passes understanding to my heart.
He’s molding and making me into what He wants me to be…and that is far better than anything I could imagine.

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So bring on the 30s!!
I want all the time I have left to count for Jesus!
If the Lord hasn’t returned in 10 years and I ring in 40 and still have no children…God will still be just as good and kind as He’s ever been.

When I meditate on the goodness and the reality of the presence of God in my life, 30 doesn’t seem so scary anymore.

“Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:
By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.”
~Romans 5:1-5

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