My Next Thirty Years by Tim Mc Graw
I think I’ll take a moment to celebrate my age
End of an era and the turning of a page
Now it’s time to focus in on where I go from here
Lord have mercy on my next thirty years…
Maybe some of you are familiar with this great song from Tim Mc Graw where a man on his 30th birthday reflects on his life – where he’s been and, more importantly, where he wants to go in the next 30 years.
This weekend, like the man in this song, I reached a milestone birthday, only I have a few years on him (haha) – I celebrated my 50th birthday! Go ahead, cheer, applaud – you’re allowed – I did! Unlike many women who shy away from the number on the calendar like they do the number on the scale, I think that my age is something to be rejoiced over and celebrated! I have survived this earth and this life for 50 years! Half a century! 18, 250 days! I think that’s amazing! I think back on the awesome things that I’ve seen God do in my life – the ups, the downs – the joys and sorrows he’s walked me through – sometimes carried me through – sometimes kicking and screaming! What I would have missed if I had not lived 50 years! Hooray for 50!
But, also like Tim’s song, I’ve spent a good bit of time over the last several months reflecting on my “next 50 years” – where do I want to go from here? Who do I want to be? How do I want to be seen? How do I want to be remembered? Frankly, regardless of who I was in those first 50 years, it will probably be the person people encounter in these last years that others will remember. Starting a race strong is nice, but how you finish is really what counts, isn’t it? And yet, sadly, many of us get to this stage of our life and think life is over – it’s time to stop, give up, or at least slow down.
As I thought over these things, I knew this is not what I want – as I see my final child graduating this year, my fifth grandchild about to be born – it’s not time to start lowering the curtain on my performance! It’s time for my second act! Now, more than ever, my hands and time are freed up to be all God has called me to be – to pursue the dreams that He has put in my heart, to serve him in new ways that you just can’t when you have a house full of kids and family obligations. In the last three years, God has saved my life from a terrible car crash and used that car crash to make my surgery a year and a half ago a possibility. Then He used that surgery to bring an amazing partial healing to my chronic illness that had me practically couch bound! I don’t think He did that so I can fritter away my next 50 years! For me, right now, that first step means, signing up for classes to get my certification as a professional stylist! A little scary? A little nerve wracking? Yes! But, Act 2 is about to begin! God is my producer and director. How exciting to look at the future and think of all the possibilities that lay ahead!
Certainly, sometimes as we age, physical things happen that we have no control over. But, we can choose HOW we face them. We may have to learn to pace ourselves a little differently, and the party might end at 9 o’clock instead of 1 a.m., but that doesn’t mean we don’t party at all! We can choose to be the victim or the victor! Aging is inevitable, but getting old is a choice!
In my next thirty years I’m gonna have some fun
Try to forget about all the crazy things I’ve done
Maybe now I’ve conquered all my adolescent fears
And I’ll do it better in my next thirty years
My next thirty years I’m gonna settle all the scores
Cry a little less, laugh a little more
Find a world of happiness without the hate and fear
Figure out just what I’m doin’ here in my next thirty years