For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Another Year...But Not Just Any "Another Year"

Yesterday was my birthday. I have been part of this planet for 48 years, and no, I'm not embarrassed to tell you that. I think getting older is a privilege. I've known too many people who wanted another birthday, or another several decades, and didn't get that gift. So, a long time ago I determined not to lament the ticking of the clock and the changing of age.

I worked Saturday so I could have off yesterday to spend with the kids because...well, I like spending time with them. Plus, it is our tradition.

About 20 1/2 years ago, I sat in a doctor's office and heard the heartbreaking words that I could not have children. We had tried some infertility meds that showed no signs of working, and we had three options: 1. Choose not to have children, 2. Adopt, or 3. Go big time infertility. We said we had to pray about it. I left the office stunned and crushed. How could my woman's body not do what a woman's body is supposed to do? That was a horrible day. It was a horrible jar to my view of myself. A month later we knew we were not going to try big time infertility methods, but adopt or not? We were praying when I came down with a stomach virus...that turned out to be a miracle. Nine months later, our daughter was born. Every birthday her dad took off work, and we celebrated the miracle.

Nearly two years later, we had been trying to conceive for nearly a year, and once again I sat in the doctor's office as he told me my daughter was a fluke, that my body simply could not conceive a baby. Ten months later I gave birth to our son. Seems that God likes to do the impossible for us, and once again, a birthday became a celebration of a miracle.

Naturally, the kids wanted to celebrate mine and their dad's birthdays as "big days", too, and so the tradition was started. But the kids are older now, and college takes up birthdays, and I was honestly thinking that the "big day" birthday may have slipped into the past. So yesterday I sat on my deck, sipped coffee, and talked to God about His view of birthdays. After all, He is outside of time, and is it a big deal to Him?

And this is what came to me as I sat in the quiet with Him:

A birthday isn't a celebration that you were born.
It is a celebration that you are still alive.
A birthday says you have been given another year to be here.
You have been given another year to make a difference,
to be the gift.

To be the gift.

What a beautiful thing to celebrate.

What a beautiful way to live.

Being the gift.

May God grant me many more years to celebrate being a gift, and may I live worthy of each one.

Shalom and happy celebration of the miracle of you...may you live it well...

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