Life is full of phases and cycles. As I listened to two young women chatting in a fashion designer’s store (they were hovering around the till while most were just browsing), I find myself in the middle of a conversation on one of their futures (I never quite figured out who). As they pondered, mused, and wondered aloud, one of the girls thumbed her was through a people magazine. As she got to the back she interrupted her predictions of tomorrow to share the relevant astrology viewpoint for the related sign. I found myself struggling to keep my thoughts to myself, finding little that didn’t make me sound even older, irrelevant, condescending than my gray hairs made me out to be.
As I age I wonder if anyone realizes that they are truly getting older. I rarely see myself as I am in the mirror. I think I can do things I did twenty and thirty years ago, mostly because I don’t try to do them anymore. I’m not so sure I am any different than the two searching girls in the store.
There is an alternative to the similar approaches offered above. First, we can take responsibility for our choices. Relying on the advice of others to shape and frame can be dangerous. Know your sources. Understand their perspectives. It may be more risky at times to listen than to ignore.
Second, recognize and celebrate the chapters of your life. Learn and grow, always. When a time has passed, look back with appreciation on the price you have paid for what you experientially know.
Three, take advantage of God’s offer to experience what Divinity free gives. There is more to life than being an isolated soul. We are part of community. We are in relationship with the Divine. Live life to the maximum. Walk knowing that a time will come when “a great trumpet will be blown, calling home the exiles from Assyria, welcoming home the refugees from Egypt to come and worship God on the holy mountain, Jerusalem.” (Isaiah 27.12) Live with Hope.
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