I turned 28 this week. Twenty-Eight.
I’ve potentially used up one third of my life so far. Two thirds remaining, if things continue on smoothly.
I am solidly in my late twenties. And I am solidly glad to be here.
My sweet husband told me he was glad I was getting older because it means we’ve been together longer.
I’m glad for that.
I am also glad to be getting older because it means I’ve been alive longer.
But seriously. For a people who are so consumed by scarcity, why are we also so scared by aging?
Because doesn’t the lengthening of years mean that we have more? More memories. More experiences. More wisdom. More photos. More life.
I was singing to the toddler I nanny for to sleep the other day. He’s in the precocious phase of absolutely needing a nap and absolutely not wanting to take it. Especially with big brother and sister downstairs playing legos, how could he possibly close his eyes? So I sing Amazing Grace over and over. All the verses. Each one getting a little softer, a little slower, until finally his eyelids get heavy enough that blinking seems harder than just letting them stay closed.
So I got to the fourth verse for the third time and there, in one line, my entire perspective on how to live out my remaining days on this earth shifted.
When we’ve been there ten thousand years… We’ve no less days to sing his praise than when we first begun.
We think we’re losing time. We only have so much and then it will be gone. Use up these days, make the most of them, don’t let a minute be wasted. Life is short, your years are fleeting, the hours are scarce.
But the truth is, we have eternity. And in eternity you only gain time, you never lose it. Even after we’ve been gathered around the throne of glory, marveling in the sheer beauty, basking in the radiant light, ravished by the face to face love of our savior for ten thousand years, we’ll have just as much time as we did the first day our chubby four-year-old hands folded in prayer over a candlelit muffin and asked Jesus into our hearts.
So I don’t plan on feeling frantic about the next two thirds of my life on this earth. I want to walk a little slower when I’ve got a hand in mine. I want to linger over that hot cup of steaming coffee. I want to sit cross legged in green grass and marvel at how the clouds drift through the sky. I want to look into the eyes of the one speaking to me and listen with undivided attention when they tell me how their day went. I want to savor the bites of sweet ice cream melting on my tongue. I want to sit on the porch as evening fade and watch the stars come out. I want to lay in the stillness that comes right before slumber and enjoy the steady rhythm of my husband breathing beside me. I am done hurrying through this life, anxious to maximize each hour to its optimum productivity. I’m done checking the clock every ten minutes. I don’t need to rush or hustle. I’ve got all the time in the world.
I don’t know how many more years I have left in this body on this side of eternity. It could be one third over or half over or much closer than anyone expects. But I do know that what follows will be forever. And you can’t divide forever into fractions.