Dear Birthday Girl

Dear Birthday Girl,

Happy 2nd anniversary of your 29th birthday!  I am celebrating you with confetti and streamers, drums and kazoos and baton twirling! (Can you see it?)

You, however, may be waking up this morning wishing you had a husband and kids bringing you a tray of burnt toast, sloshing orange juice on you as they tumble into bed with you.  It’s a nice picture and it may be your picture someday, but today God has given you a different photograph.

When I look at the snapshots of you – not Instagram with fancy filters, but the candid shots when you think others aren’t looking – I see someone who is beautiful and brave, but not afraid to admit when she’s unsure.  I see a leader impacting scores of young women with the courage to speak uncomfortable truth, but the grace to hang in with them when they mess up.  I see someone who isn’t timid to ask questions and one who sets the bar high for herself.  Someone asking Jesus when to wait and when to jump.

I know people say unhelpful things like “Jesus was single.” or “God is larger in your picture because He’s all you have.”  And you want to punch them in the face. (you have my permission).  You are amazing and strong.

In you I see a unique picture, but also one with something in common with everyone everywhere.

We all have a longing in us.  We feel incomplete.  Unfinished.

Whether we’re single and longing for marriage, or married and longing for kids, or a graduate and longing for the perfect job, or a hard worker longing for a better job, or a mom of toddlers longing for them to feed themselves, it’s there.  It’s in us to want more.

There’s the temptation to look at air-brushed smiling photos of others that don’t tell the behind-the-dimples story of rejection letters, financial strain, all-nighters, or screaming kids and say, “That!  That’s what I want!”

You may be longing for the picture of “someday”.  But you don’t own someday.  You only own today.

So seize every bit of awesome. Celebrate the wild, beautiful colors of your today life. Notice the minutest details and the grandest God-gifts.  Count every pixel of delightfulness.  Let all the light in.  Expose yourself to all of the good things. Don’t live life waiting to live life.

Like a polaroid, your picture is developing, just like all of ours. It’s in process.  Developing is God’s job and He can’t be hurried.  Maddening!  But you know He can be trusted. Don’t worry about what your picture will look like tomorrow.  He’s got it covered.

Celebrate and own the picture of you today.



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