I recently celebrated a birthday and I do not mind one bit getting older. Now, that doesn’t mean that I like how my body gets creakier, stiffer and more uncooperative as the years go on. However, life is a celebration, a gift, a wonder to be enjoyed and appreciated!
I often joke that as I age I like to think of myself as a piece of really expensive of cheese. You know the houttey-flouttey kind. The types that have to age for years before they are ‘ripe’. The closest I get to this is Parmesan, but hey, I like that one. Anyway, when they mold you are supposed to cut off just that little area because the cheese is sssooo good and pricey, that it becomes only more flavorful with time anyway. Well, that’s me! I just wish that as I aged I could choose where the parts of trimming occurred; you know a little bite off the hips, around the middle, etc, would be nice.
Don’t you admire those people who don’t do a bunch of work plastic surgery to try at all costs to make them self forever stay young? Especially when they go so far that when they smile their face doesn’t change. Or their body looks like a nineteen year old then they are like eighty-four. Come on, seriously, what is wrong is aging anyway? We are meant to age! We are also expected to become wiser, more knowledgeable in what really matters in life and pass it on!
I found in Titus 2:2 (King James Version) something very interesting actually about aging. It reads: Aged men be sober, grave, temperate, sound in faith, in charity, in patience.
Titus 2:3 – 5 (King James Version)reads: the aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers…teachers of good things; That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husband, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home.
How awesome is that!!! The experiences, life lessons and understanding that comes with being on this earth awhile allows one to be in the position to help others along the path.
[Tweet “Experiences from AGING are GREAT blessing to share and help others @AMothersShadow”]
So what exactly are the ideas or concepts these scriptures reference?
Let’s start with false accusers.
It means to be a slanderer or a traitor. To make a false spoken statement that causes people to have a bad opinion of someone else. (Merriam Webster)
Isn’t that a hard lesson we all learn? We don’t mean to be an awful person, to pass on information we should NOT (since it’s none of our business, concern or has anything to do with us at all anyway) or be an untrue friend EVER. Yet, we sometimes give the impression with our words, a look, even a sigh, or even not saying anything at all is a way of not sticking up for someone when we really ought to be defending them. We can help teach this, or be a sounding board, then help another understand that being a true friend is not easy, but definitely worth it and the only thing that proves respectability, demonstrates how to trustworthy and shows a noble character.
To be sober.
Ok, of course the obvious, no one is of much worth if they are drinking all the time. But sober here is not what that idea is insinuating. Sober means to be more mature than potty humor, mockery of anything reverent, or being crude, mocking and sarcastic in a mean spirited way.
It is quite the contrary! Sober means to have a clean sense of humor, a good temperament with a cheerful disposition that all can feel comfortable with and enjoy being around. That is the sign of a person who is comfortable in their own skin! One who has matured, does not feel the need to make hurtful or callous jokes or comments at another person’s expense for a quick or cheap laugh. Why? Everyone who comes in contact with you will know that you will not turn around and do this to them.
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To love their husbands.
A person who has been married for decades knows that it can be the most joyous of all experiences…..and the most difficult of roads to walk occasionally. When you are in a rough spot and you just need someone to let you know that it can work out alright, can be a complete game changer. This is where a positive, optimistic been-there-done-that person with some years behind them can be an incredible force for good. To encourage you to just keep going, put the other person before your needs (we are not talking about abuse or those types of situations of course), pick your battles and love them all the more. Find something that makes your life better BECAUSE of they are a part of it and focus on that, then do something special for them to make them happy. It comes back to you, I promise it does. There is nothing more important you can give to your children than a strong marriage and a happy home.
[Tweet “In marriage pick your battles. In the long run it’s worth it! @AMothersShadow “]
To love their children.
Our children deserve our unconditional love, it it our obligation to take care of their emotional, physical, religious and other needs. But, oh, we all have our days when the nicest thing we can say to our youngster is: I really like the way you comb your hair. Or the best time of the entire week was when they were asleep. Fortunately, those are not the norm, and we get through it and it’s amazing!. Now wouldn’t it be fabulous if you had the experience to share and did so WHEN you were ASKED, or when you felt PROMPTED? To spread your wisdom of the how’s, why’s, and that you survived it all, sprinkled with the funny stories of what your kids did so that they young moms and dads knew they could survive and thrive through their own angels/monsters..oops I didn’t say that did I? hahaha. Parenting through ALL stages is a challenge: baby, toddler, child, teen, even adult kids can bring hardships and just having someone who doesn’t judge, but loves you, listens, possibly gives a shoulder to cry on, can make all the difference.
[Tweet “Good Parenting= days when best you can say: your hair is nice…@AMothersShadow “]
To be Discreet.
I was very surprised and found this interesting when I looked up the meaning of discreet in the dictionary (Merriam-Webster). The definition reads: not likely to be seen or noticed by many people.
WOW! How different is that from every commercial, billboard, clothing line – geez and about everything we see all day!!! If we could actually get out of the way, focus on developing our talents, skills and abilities what a better person we would become! Of course taking care of our self along the way, our body is a temple, no doubt, but we get so obsessed with the size, look etc – But, if we actually looked at our self as God did, recognized our own unique abilities and talents, then appreciated them as gifts; how much more able would we be to be of service and value to God and the purpose He has for each of us to perform while we are on this earth!?! Those who age with the focus of SERVING others. Truly loving God and realizing the only thing they have to give back to Him is their time and will; are the ones who have faced life’s challenges with dignity, faith and courage, and consequently will leave a noble legacy that others know they can trust to follow which will be a blessing and guide for generations to come.
[Tweet “Be discreet, get out of the way, be focused on leaving a noble legacy! @AMothersShadow “]
I’m going to end with chaste and keepers at home.
You know, it’s amazing the bombardment we have with the impression that it is alright to be unfaithful to your spouse, or to be having children out of wedlock IF there is possibility of a healthy and safe marriage. Or that any number of immoral choices do not matter or will not affect anyone but our self. When in reality, we need to be incredibly protective, and determined, to do whatever it takes to keep anything out, anyone away, whatever could do harm, injure, maim or ruin our marriage, our family or deteriorate our relationships with our loved ones – nothing is worth it. If we can prevent it, it is our utmost responsibility to protect our family relations in honorable and virtuous ways!
Remember, everyone has their blessing of agency, which is the right to choose how they will act and behave. Never judge, just love and support. Always let your family members know they are loved unconditionally, but not the action of their decisions. They must have the consequences of course, and you must allow it, but always let them know they are still loved. A person who has been around the block, so to speak, can be understanding and a loving role model when situations, events or even tragedies occur. You know that life continues, the world revolves on, the day comes again and you can be a comfort and a beacon in the dark night for someone who cannot see their way. You can give hope to the hopeless and a smile and encouragement to the weary.
So, let’s embrace our birthdays, love the life we are given and all the experiences it brings along the way. Let’s have a fabulous year together!
[Tweet “EMBRACE your birthdays! LOVE LIFE and JOY in ALL the experiences it brings! @AMothersShadow”]
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2016
Original image courtesy of digitalart at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.
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[Tweet “Families are Unique by design, don’t judge, just show LOVE & compassion @AMothersShadow”]