NOTE: this is a guest post from my mamabear.
At the dawn of her half-century, she shared these words with an inner circle.
Listen close to her wisdom from over fifty years of doing friendships.
When I first started to think about turning 50, it freaked me out a little bit. Where did half a century go? Have I made the most of this time? It sounded old – and it feels old at times too!
But then I began to think – this presents me with an opportunity. An opportunity for reflection. An opportunity to give thanks. An opportunity for gaining a different perspective.
When I focus on me – me turning 50, me getting older, me having a mid-life crisis or whatever is going on with my extended break from work – I found myself feeling a bit down as I navel gazed.
But when I focus on the creator and giver of my life, God himself, I am left in absolute awe!
God knew what He was doing when He planned for me to be brought into the world on 7/10/68 to two loving parents; at this time in history and in this part of the world.
When I focus on the breath of life He has given me and all the years of life since then, I am so thankful! I am thankful for where He places me, the family I have, the husband he led me to, the two beautiful children He gifted me with, and YOU – my dear friends. When I think about each of you, and the ones who were unable to come, again I am left in awe and wonder.
When I look around the room, I see precious gem stones – beautiful jewels. Each one a different colour. Each one shining in their own way. Each one of you is special and unique. You reflect different aspects of Gods character – His beauty, His love, His compassion, His understanding, His faithfulness, His strength, His patience and His sense of humour!
And to be able to call you FRIENDS -how blessed am I?! Blessed beyond measure.
My heart is filled to overflowing and I am so thankful – to God and to each one of you!
I reflected on some of the things have I learnt about friendships from you all:
- There are different seasons – times when you may draw closer and other times there may be a little while between contact – and that’s ok.
- It is good to have freedom in the frequency of contact, to not be under any sense of obligation, but to get together when you want or need to.
- Be quick to forgive or ask forgiveness.
- A listening ear can make all the difference in someone not feeling alone and that there is hope.
- Always remember your friends in prayer, lifting them to God, asking Him to meet all their needs.
- Share in the joys but also the struggles – if you aren’t sure what to say, just turn up and be present.
- Always be trustworthy with the sacred and secret things people share with you.
- Take a risk in being vulnerable and sharing with people you feel safe with, let them be there for you, ask them to pray for and with you.
- See friends as a precious gift from God himself and worth fighting for.
So a huge thank you for the times we have shared. For the conversations, the laughs, the tears. Thank you for bringing such joy into my life. You are all God with skin on!
So fifty is a reason to celebrate! Celebrate the gift of life and the giver of Life!
Today I want to thank, honour and bless each of you -old and new friends. So I hope you can enjoy the lovely spread of food and the company. And I also have a little gift for each of you -to say thank you and I love you!
From fifty year old Jane Schilling