Today is my birthday. I am 53 years young as of sometime this morning. And yet, this morning, on a glorious summer/fall day in Denver, Colorado, I woke up dissatisfied.
You ever have that feeling? I was the youngest of four children and so the term “spoiled brat” fit me often. I remember countless Christmas days after the carnage was had and wrapping paper filled the living room floor. Always the same thought hit me.
Is that all?
And now at 53, much older than that little girl, the same thought crosses my mind that leads to the same emptiness.
The first step to fighting this is acknowledge the truth – Ecclesiastes 3:11 tells us that “…God has set eternity in the human heart…” God put a hole in me that can only be satisfied by Him. Nothing will ever complete me until I see Jesus face to face. So of course, I am attacked with these thoughts.
The second step in fighting that feeling is remembering what the enemy’s purpose is. John 10:10 tells us “The enemy does not come accept to steal, kill and destroy…”
He wants to steal the beauty of the blue sky and replace it with a gray-clouds-attitude. He wants to kill the joy I have in being alive and loved and able to love. He wants to destroy my contentment and whisper those three evil words, “You need more.”
Ridiculous. Lies come to mind:
It’s my birthday. I should be able to have a shopping spree at the mall.
Why doesn’t anyone ever plan me a surprise party?
100 folks on Facebook told me Happy Birthday – why not 101?
These are flaming arrows from the enemy. I recognize and I remember Oh yeah, he is after me.
Third, I make a conscious choice to fill my mind with the Words of God. The end of John 10:10 says “…but I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly.”
I choose to acknowledge who I am – forgiven, redeemed, chosen, beloved and able to live an abundant life!
Fourth, I turn everything I see into gratitude. Thank you Lord for my dogs and the delight they bring me. Thank you for a great cup of Starbucks coffee. Thank you for a family that love me. Thank you for friends who take time to tell me Happy Birthday. Thank you for quiche for lunch and writing on the back deck of a friend’s house on an absolutely gorgeous day. Thank you Lord that I have gotten to live 53 years and I have seen and felt so much joy. And finally, Thank you Lord, for giving me so much that I do not deserve. Your grace overwhelms my heart.
Fifth, I pray for those who are going through difficulties and struggles. I pray for those I know that are in the hospital or are sick. I pray for the marriages that are in trouble and those poor Syrian migrants. I pray for the children who get nothing on their birthdays. Nothing.
I breathe. It occurs to me that the discontent, the selfishness, the dissatisfaction is gone. I choose life on my birthday. I choose to allow the Lord to fight for me.
I choose to have a wonderful 53rd year!