To this day, my greatest birthday memory was my 7th birthday. My parents were a struggling young couple and my mother was attending nursing school. My father would use the family car to get to work on a swing shift at a refinary. My mother would wake at 5 a.m. to get ready and catch the bus to school each day. She would drop me off at a close friends house around 6:30 a.m. where I would stay until it was time for me to go to school.
On this particular day (11/13th) she woke me up which seemed to be in the middle of the night. I couldn't understand why she didn't turn on any lights in the darkness. We turned the corner in the small hallway and I saw a dim light coming from the kitchen. My little tiny heart begin to beat a little faster and I became very anxious. And then... WOW!! the breakfast table was filled with candlelight. I had no cake, no present, no card, no guests. But, OH!!!...I did have my Mama, her home cooked breakfast, her love, just she and I alone in the dim lite kitchen talking about what "I" wanted to talk about. Most of all I appreciated her thoughtfulness and imagination to make her little girl happy inspite of having no other means or money. After we ate, she put me back to bed for a little while longer until it was time to leave for the day. For the rest of that day my mind would relive my moments with Mama over and over. With great pride, I told all of my closest friends at school that day. This shall be my most cherished memory for as long as I live. It's remembrance ALWAYS bring tears. Thank you Mama.
As an adult I have had many wonderful gifts and celebrations. My husband never forgets and has given me priceless memories, birthday parties, trips, etc. The congregation has also been very thoughtful and generous to their First Lady. I love the happy birthday song that is sung to me by my grandchildren on the phone and hearing from my Sons and wives. Oh yes, and the birthday card my Mom sends in the mail even though we live in the same city :-) My excitement is different of that of a child. I reflect upon the blessings of God and the valley and mountaintop experiences and rejoice.
When approaching my 35th birthday I became depressed because I didn't want to be 40. In the meantime, God taught me through some hard lessons to be grateful for added life. By age 50 I had learned to rejoice. I am excited about the gifts that God has ALREADY given me. My family, my faith, salvation, contentment in mind and spirit, shelter, food, health. I could go on and on. I can truly say that I don't need a thing for my birthday as I look towards 60 but prayer.
As I close, I would like to borrow a thought from my husbands favorite scripture, Phillippians 1:21. It is my desire and pleasure to daily live for Christ. He is my greatest joy and excitement. I wait in great anticipation to "gain" my greatest gift that awaits me.....
Thank you Jesus!