I always reflect on my birthday. I look back over my life and think of things I would have done differently, rejoice in things that were done well, enjoy the blessings of God, and think about the future.
At 38, I have done a lot in this short time that is but a vapor. I have served several churches (including planting one), had a bunch of babies, survived divorce, and accomplished a list of many other things. For the first time, I am contemplating my future and have no answers as to what I will do. And that’s okay. Life is pretty much lived a day at a time. And there is much to be done with that in mind.
At 38, I will be the best husband I can be. It isn’t easy. Marriage takes work, but I want to enjoy the moments when Jennifer and I are old and wrinkly. I want to look back and know that we worked through every rough patch and came out closer to each other and closer to the Lord.
At 38, I want to be the best dad I can be. In a blended family of 7 kids, that is also challenging. With kids ranging from 15 to almost 5 months, the needs are vast. I want each one to know that he or she is loved. I don’t have tons of money, but I can leave behind a godly heritage.
At 38, I want to be the best hospice chaplain I can be. For many, I am their pastor at the end of life. It is an honor. In doing that, I want to be a great coworker to the hospice team. I want them to know they have a pastor in me as much as the patients do if they need it.
At 38, I want to be the best servant of Christ I can be. There is nothing flashy about me. I’m just an ordinary guy who serves an extraordinary God. When people look at me, may they see a reflection of Jesus in my life.
If I base my lifespan upon the biblical average of 70, I am in the last half. I want it to count. I would love to have the energy of years past coupled with the insight I have gained thus far. I trust that God will grant me a measure of that.
A few years ago, I was sitting in Chick-Fil-A talking to a pastor friend. I told him that I felt I was on the sidelines. He told me that I was in half-time. The first half of the game may have been rough, but the Coach was prepping me to finish well and win. Four years later, I still feel like I’m there. Whatever Jesus, the Coach, wants to teach me in this season is fine with me. My life has not been perfect, but I want to end well. I want to hear “Well done” when I cross the finish line and see my Savior face to face. It will be worth it all!