Spirit {A Time for Everything}

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:
    a time to be born and a time to die,
    a time to plant and a time to uproot,
    a time to kill and a time to heal,
    a time to tear down and a time to build,
   a time to weep and a time to laugh,
    a time to mourn and a time to dance,
  a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
    a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
 a time to search and a time to give up,
    a time to keep and a time to throw away,
 a time to tear and a time to mend,
    a time to be silent and a time to speak,
    a time to love and a time to hate,
    a time for war and a time for peace.

--Ecclesiastes 3


Turning 32 is teaching me a lot of things. A LOT. There were times when it seemed like I was in the middle of an army boot camp that I didn't sign up for, crawling through mud, covered in bruises and bawling my eyes out like a spoiled brat. This year has been filled with those, and I know there's more to come. 

But, it has been filled with happy moments, too, very much like the R&R soldiers get after intense weeks of training. I have no idea where the military metaphors are coming from, but they are are appropriate, I guess.

Life is a battlefield. 

You hear that line in songs but you never really get to appreciate how real it is until you live it. There's the struggle to do the right thing in the midst of pain and anger, the struggle to discover who you really are apart from the people you love, the job you love, the things you love. There's the daily battle for sanity and peace in the midst of brokenness and confusion. 

Growing up, turning a year older, is tough! I learned so much in the last couple of months of being 31 than I have probably learned in college or in high school, most of them about being an adult, learning humility, learning forgiveness, learning how to be forgiven, and returning to the things that matter-- love, relationships, being at peace with who you are, not defining yourself by the people you love and love you, but defining yourself by His love (and what an amazing Love it is!) 

I learned that there is really nothing that we know, for sure. We think we know a lot when we're young and then life hits us with curveballs and we're cowering in the corner, frozen with no clue about what to do. That is OK, still, as long as we know who to turn to when we're all bruised and swollen and swearing off baseball for the last time (the metaphors, again!). 

I learned that there is a time for everything, that listening to the Voice that matters brings peace, and that peace transcends all understanding. Because there are things that matter more, things that demand sniper-like focus and attention, otherwise they'd be gone forever. I thrived as a multi-tasker in college, dabbling in this and that and doing enough just to get by, but now, I am being taught, "There is a time for everything, slow down, focus on the things that matter, on love and relationships and covenants that cannot, and should not be broken, no matter what the cost."

Man, training is hard. Learning is hard. But I guess that what's life is. Everyday is a constant revelation of things that we didn't know before, or things that we have learned but forgotten. But it is also necessary. There are days when I wake up not wanting to be where I am, impatient at the thought of things I could be doing and it takes focused, painful and even exhausting moments of reflection to remember and realign myself with the things that I should be learning, right here and right now. So I guess 32 will be a year of more learning and more growing up. I can't say that I look forward to it. It seems painful and muddy and I'm sure I'll be bruised along the way. But I will get through it and hopefully, I'll come out stronger and wiser. 


A few snapshots from our birthdays (being apart is also tough, but we make do. Bought the husband a small blueberry cheesecake that he blew from the other side of the screen. Talk about cheesy!) 







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