Ask the average person OVER 40 how they feel about birthdays and you’ll probably get a negative response.

Why? Because after 40, every year brings you closer to death.

After 40 you work until retirement. The short years of retirement bring travel and seeing grandkids in between doctor visits, medical tests and funerals. Then it’s your funeral.

I used to think this way. The first half of my life was exciting with school, meeting my husband, first jobs, marriage, new house, new kids, etc. The second half would be more depressing since there was “nothing to look forward to except retirement and death”. Seriously!

But now I know that a birthday doesn’t mark another year closer to death, it’s a day that reminds me that I was just alive for 365 days and during each one I had every opportunity to make a wonderful difference in the world. And Lord willing, I’ll have 365 more ahead of me to do great things, which I can ponder at next year’s birthday!

How did I make this transition from birthdays being a death sentence to being thankful for another year to make a difference? By getting to know the Big Guy who made me!

There’s a mirror. In this mirror you see things you like about yourself and things you don’t. The King of the Universe asks you to keep doing the great things and to work on the not-so-great things. In order to do so He presents us opportunities for improvement. Those opportunities, if successful, improve us which help us like ourselves! Then we get excited about the next opportunity!

Working on my relationship (with God) has decreased my fear of death too. As sad as I will be to leave loved ones I know I will get to look into Jesus’ eyes. When I feel his love in my soul there will be nothing but pure joy. Knowing this I don’t fear death.

I’m another year older. So what? Lord willing, I have another year ahead of me to do the great things God calls me to do. Knowing He’s got things lined up for me is exciting. I no longer am bored with every day being like the last. If I am, then I’m not looking hard enough to see God’s greatness in the world!

All of you that have a birthday this year, thank God for being alive! Ask Him to show you how to be a person who makes a difference in the world. If you do, then when someone asks you how you feel about getting older you’ll respond, “Great! I can’t wait to see what tomorrow brings!”

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