Yesterday my husband and I shared something that sets us apart as a couple, something we love sharing with each other: our double birthday. These birthdays have gained a warp speed lately and pile up more rapidly with each year, leaving us wondering how another 12 months could possibly have passed already. I’ve revised the expression “Time marches by” to “Time skateboards by.” It seems that I just reached the milestone of my jubilee year, but actually I’m knocking on the door of (gulp!) 60 — how did I get to be so old? — and Steve has now outlived both of his parents. Sometimes, the reality of aging can sober us.
But yesterday, I welcomed another year of life with a full and grateful heart. It helped that dear friends from Romania are staying with us this week, the very first time Romanians have visited me in the States. When I arrived home from work and saw their shoes inside the door, my heart skipped a beat. There are Romanians in our home! I knew all was right with my world. I met these friends 24 years ago when they were newly-married college students, and now they’ve been on staff with Campus Crusade almost as long as I was.
Over dinner, we relived stories that made us laugh so hard that tears seeped out. And we remembered a few of the many overwhelming evidences of God’s great love, recounting them with thankful hearts. Steve was sung his very first rendition of the typical Romanian birthday wish for a long life, “Mulţi ani traiasca.” We reminisced over old photos and even watched a clip of the revolution in Timişoara together.
This birthday, we especially recounted those significant and formational years in my life. But Steve and I are filled with gratitude for all our years. Each person and experience in our lives came to us filtered through God’s fingers. Even in the things we sometimes wish we could change, we know that He has always remained faithful and good and just. We’re grateful.
“They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart.” Ecclesiastes 5:20