Our oldest grandson lives with us. That makes the passing of time as indicated by his birthdays more vivid. He just turned seventeen. I hadn’t thought about it like this before, but there is something different about seventeen. Sixteen is exactly the midpoint of the teen years – neither a child nor an adult. But seventeen puts him in the last half of teendom. It’s like at seventeen he is no longer half-child, he is more half-man. It could be a sad time. A time to grieve over the loss of the bright eyed, ever-learning little kid he used to be. And there is a bit of that in it for me. But there is also an excitement at what he is becoming. I can still see the bright eyes, and the endless desire to learn in the man he is becoming. He will be an incredible addition to the adult world in a few years and maybe adulthood won’t be so stuffy any more.
The little Haitian girl who is staying with us just turned three. Three is an amazing age. Always learning; always excited. Excited about things like Granny coming home, about ice cream and bananas. I like to preface her name with the word “Princess” and to say that she is to be the first female president of Haiti – the one who solidifies their place as an equal partner in the world’s commerce.
And I just turned sixty-eight. Sixty-eight was hard for me. I have always enjoyed birthdays, and the party was great this time. But sixty-eight is closer to seventy than it is even to sixty-five. Suddenly I felt old. And there is so much left to do. I don’t have my PhD, yet. I haven’t figured out how to really help the Haitian people on a very large scale. I haven’t published half the books floating around in my head or really found out how best to market the ones I have published.
Time is a strange thing. Sometimes it moves so fast we can’t even see it flying by. At other times it crawls so slowly we cannot tell it is moving.
The Preacher who wrote Ecclesiastes said “Do not say, ‘Why is it that the former days were better than these?’ For it is not from wisdom that you ask about this.” (7:10)
“Consider the work of God. For who is able to straighten what He has bent? In the day of prosperity be happy, but in the day of adversity consider-- God has made the one as well as the other,” (7:13-14)
And finally (12:14): “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.”