By Pastor Tommy Rush, First Baptist Church
Today I turned the big “60.” It’s interesting how people describe birthdays that end in “0” as “big birthdays.” Seldom have I given much thought to birthdays, but for some reason this one has been on my mind a bit more than the others. Maybe it’s been on my mind more, because everyone I know has enjoyed reminding me of the “Big 60.” One card I received said, “It’s interesting how we describe age, you turn 30, you reach 40, you hit 50 but you make 60. After that you’re just happy to make Wednesday.”
Another friend (?) shared with me some important signs to help determine if you’re old… It takes longer to rest than it does to get tired. Your knees buckle but your belt won’t. You look forward to a dull evening. There’s nothing left to learn the hard way. Your favorite songs are mostly played in elevators and you have to speed up to get over a speed bump.
I find “Big Birthdays” are actually a good thing. They have a way of reminding me that every day is a gift. Today is what matters most! But like many others I waste too much time focusing on yesterday and tomorrow. Yesterday is a good day to learn from, but a bad day to live in. Tomorrow is good to plan for, but not good to be worried and anxious about. Jesus said in Matthew 6:34, “Don’t worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will take care of itself…” I like the old saying, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”
“Big Birthdays” are also good because they provide opportunity for us to re-evaluate goals and priorities. Life involves change. It’s always good to make adjustments when needed. If you set any goals and plans for 2020 back in January, I’m sure you’ve had to make some adjustments, just like I have. Who would have ever imagined a year like we have experienced? Over my five decades of life I’m coming to realize more and more that life is not about young and old, it’s about dead and alive. And today I’m very much alive and well!
There’s a poem written by Dr. Heartsill Wilson that is good for a “Big Birthday.” Dr. Wilson was from Marshall, Texas and became a top executive with the Chrysler Corporation in the 1950’s and 60’s. After retiring from Chrysler, he traveled the country as a motivational speaker. His poem “A New Day” has been shared by many.
“This is the beginning of a new day. God has granted me this day to do as I will.
I can waste it or use it for good. What I do with today is very important because I am exchanging a day of my life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever leaving something in place I have traded for it. I want it to be a gain not a loss, something good not evil, success not failure in order that I shall not forget the price I paid for it.”