Turning 40

2009_11Nov_2402 A few weeks ago, I turned 40.  I got the normal “getting old, over-the-hill” kind of jokes from my sisters. I was called “Old geezer” more times in one day than I ever have in my old life.  I do feel a bit older, a bit wiser, and a bit more tired and weary than I have before.

My back has been acting up again and had been limiting and inhibiting me from lifting and carrying stuff.

Among the cards and the old age jokes were a couple of letters that I received from my folks. They contain birthday wishes, among other things. They remembered the past and anticipated the future.  But one phrase has stuck in my mind:

“We become jaded without even trying…”

It’s true.  There is this strong “been there, done that” mentality that I have slowly been succumbing to. A wearied, hardening crust has been gripping my soul. I’ve felt it more as the Christmas holidays are upon us and they drag out all the trite and sentimental sayings, carols, and symbols of the season.  And I cannot bear it. 

Meanwhile, my boys are bouncing off walls, enraptured in anticipation and joy.  I used to be like that…

Even today in our worship service as they started singing about the majesty and power of Jesus.  I tried to sing those words, but they fell short in my mouth. Just words.  And I couldn’t sing.  I was tired of the same ol’ same ol’ and just stood there, my heart crusting over again.  And I thought of that phrase again:

“We become jaded without even trying…”

Disappointment.  Frustration. Weariness. Unmet expectations.  Here I am 40 years old and what have I done with my life? It’s easy to become jaded because I try to lower our expectations so I don’t become disappointed.

God, I don’t want to be jaded.  I want to see life through new eyes. I want my heart softened again, tender toward You, tender towards my wife and my boys and another new life joining our family. I need Your perspective.

I can’t do it myself.  There is no magic pill to take and snap me out of my mentality. I’ve lost my rose colored glasses.  But I do know the One who gives sight to the blind and can correct the vision of a weary, jaded soul.

Which brings me to another phrase from one of those letters .  Advice to a wide-eyed 40 year old from one who has been around the block a few more times and still has a twinkle in his eyes:

“Don’t grow weary. Keep praying. Love well.”

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