I love all the seasons. Often I have been asked which season I like the best. My usual answer is whatever season we are headed for next. As the hot summer ends, I always look forward to cooler temperatures and watching the brilliance of the changing colors of leaves…..just like I love the cold winter and the possibility of snow……just like I love the magnificence of everything blooming in spring…..to the heat of long summer nights. I love them all!
Today on the Back 9 I have learned to embrace and to enjoy the different seasons of life. I truly didn’t want to like the Back 9 of life. After all, I really didn’t care for the idea of emptying our nest. I certainly have not liked watching my parents become old and feeble and burying one of them. I haven’t liked the fact that my body is aging and I can no longer run nor see very well which requires “readers”. The list could go on and on…..no one told me that the changes in mid-life could be very tough and even heartbreaking….maybe they did, but I didn’t listen. Or maybe it was the fact that I just wasn’t there so their experience and advice didn’t apply to me….again….You don’t know what you don’t know….you have to walk the walk. I can say that as I have entered the Back 9, the stories I have heard now resonate and have become fresh and relevant as I walk different avenues of life.
Because we can’t anticipate everything that is going to happen in all seasons of life, we can make the choice to embrace life. If I am still living, there are things God has for me to do and to learn. They say that the punch that knocks you out is not necessarily the hardest punch; it is the one you didn’t see coming. I made a decision about two years ago: the fact that getting older and different “seasons” were going to be a part of my life meant I could choose to embrace them, anticipate them. I could choose a positive outlook and lean heavily into God’s arms to teach me and give me joy in all “seasons of life!” The alternative would be to complain, dread, pout and always live in the past, becoming stale and negative.
I know that God is not Dead. He is alive and I am still very much alive. A different season, yes… but God’s not done with me or you. Yet…..it is His divine plan…to age…and to live through different seasons of life and take our past and use it to live our future.
No matter what season you/me/we are headed into….God’s desire is for you/me to anticipate it, embrace it and use it for His glory and my/your/our good. HE wants everyone to live Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go!”
We can either choose the attitude that says getting old sucks or, we can say, “Bring it on God.” Being strong and courageous and saying to God with an open hand, “What can I take from all that You have taught me and use it for Your glory?” Currently, I am confident I have certainly lived over half of my life and I am now more equipped and able to help someone walk through a season I have already experienced….with age comes experience and, hopefully, with experience comes wisdom….the wisdom can be shared from our good stuff and our bad stuff to help others.
One of the first things I want others to embrace is that just because you are on the Back 9 doesn’t mean you can’t learn ….as you age, you really realize how much you don’t know. Proverbs 4:13, “Hold on to instruction, do not let it go, guard it well, for it is your life.” God’s plan is for us to always be learning. Thus…I encourage people all the time to understand that just because you have grey hair or much experience doesn’t mean we/you can’t learn a ton from those younger than us…..just look at technology….most of the things I have learned about technology have been taught to me by people half my age! Technology is something that was new and foreign to me but if I was going to live and embrace the Back 9….I had to learn it.
So, I/you/we should never forget: no matter what season of life we are in, God has something to teach us and something we can teach others no matter our age/season. I don’t buy into the idea that “I am too old to learn!” My mother embraced learning….she learned to text in her seventies. When she had never been on a golf course or watched one hole of golf in her life and she was well into the Back 9 of life, a grandmother in fact….she embraced golf and became a student of the game. God also very much wants us to enjoy life and all that He has for us. I love the fact that I learned from her…to embrace and move forward….and grow and embrace each day as “This is the day the Lord hath made. Rejoice and be glad in it. Whatever it brings, there is a song you can sing. “You may get tired but don’t fret….nature is dawning. A new day is yawning and the sun will be coming up soon……” Embracing whatever season of life you are in can bring fulfillment and joy….I have learned it is a choice!