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forever XXI

Have you ever been to that store?!  You gotta go!  It’s a huge store filled with beautiful, INEXPENSIVE clothes!   Little piece of heaven.

 

I wasn’t sure at first if this store was for me.  It looked so….. young.  Then I wondered if the staff would look at me like one of “those”.  You know the “getting closer to 40 year old” trying to be 20….  Oh WAIT!  That IS me!  What can I say?….

 

I’m not sure when I’ll grow up.  Hopefully never.   But there are signs that age is moving forward.  I’m not sure what came first; the grey hairs (already!  can you believe that?!), signs of wrinkles, having to wear powder foundation to cover the blotchy skin, seeing gravity take over places I can’t mention, realizing that I can’t get up at 6am to go for a run, work all day, go out for dinner and then hit the dance floor at 11pm only to repeat the next day…..   I need a nap just thinking about it!

 

I remember in Vancouver I was always around people at least 10 years younger than me.  I loved their vitality for life and their willingness to go places.  They were footloose and fancy-free – just what I wanted to be.  When we moved to Calgary, I was 31 and had just had our first son, Ben.   At our new church my eye instantly caught a group of young people.  “There’s my peeps!”, I thought.  I instantly went to befriend them only to see their faces staring back at me like; “Who’s this old person??”.   I was shocked.   That’s the first time I ever felt “my age”.

What IS the deal with wanting to be young, look young, feel young anyways?  Think of all the money we spend on products that guarantee youthful appearance.  I’m a S-U-C-K-E-R for these.  Why is that really?   We idolize people who look young and hip.   Just last week I caught myself being “wowed” by Jennifer Lopez while watching American Idol.  She’s 42 and looks absolutely amazing!  AND she’s had twins?!  Geeesh!

 

When my mind starts to go there again, I go visit my mentor.   I get advice from a woman I look up to immensely.   I just wish I knew her name….

 

All I know of her is what was written of her years ago by a man who was claimed to be one of the “wisest men who ever lived”.  He describes her in a book he wrote.   One of the statements made about her stands out to me regarding all this:

 

“She smiles at the future (latter days)…. (Proverbs 31:25)


She’s smiling at the future.  No where does it write that she’s some cougar trying to look at least 10 years younger, wishing she could go back in time.

 

She may not be wearing the youthful fads but she IS wearing clothes that are well-made and elegant…. (31:25)

She’s not getting suckered into buying botox treatments every 6 weeks but she IS investing her money into her family’s future….. (31:16)

 

She’s not out night after night trying to live like the young but she IS making sure she’s got food ready for her family when they wake up (31:15)….. with the help of some coffee I’m sure…..

 

She’s not at the mall spending excess money on all the latest fads but she IS generous, giving money to the poor (31:20)

 

She’s not living life careless, footloose and fancy-free, but she IS avoiding being idle, making sure she and her family stays productive. (31:27)

 

And because she’s like this, her hubby and kids are proud of her.   She has excelled and they praise her for it. (31:28-29)

 

How many women who focus so much of their efforts on staying young, being the independent woman we keep hearing about in the media, can have their family say THAT about them?   Focusing an enormous amount of resources on staying young and trying to live like we did when we were 21 only feeds the selfishness that is inside of us.   How can I say this?  Because I did that for a season…. and you should have seen the visa bill!….. and Reuben’s face….. he was not rising up to “bless me” at that point…. in fact, it almost ruined our marriage.

 

Of course I still want to be youthful!  I think we SHOULD be youthful in our love of God, others and life!  I believe the dreams and unlimited faith we had in youth needs to fuel our days with hope and for us to pass that onto our children.   I’m not talking about that.  I’m talking about a craving for this longing society creates in us to idolize youthfunless.

 

The funny thing is that the more we try, the more it costs….. not just in money.

 

She smiles at the future. Laugh, dream, spend quality time, love and then love some more.   Care about others, give to those in need.  Forgive.   Drink water, get sunshine, exercise, find good friends.  And don’t fight aging because….

 

You’re more beautiful now than ever.

 

Live beautiful.   And in your HEART stay forever XXI

 

** reading this blog has no anti-aging effects, but LIVING it does….

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