40 Life Lessons

Originally posted February 26, 2013

I turn 40 today, and as I reflect on where I have been and where I might be going, I thought I would write out 40 things I have learned so far on this journey…

  1. God’s faithfulness has never depended on mine.
  2. What I have has always been enough.
  3. It is never a good idea to compare myself to anyone.  Ever.
  4. From the moment I found out I was going to have my first child, a lot of people had all kinds of advice and opinions.  It was good to listen, there were a lot of wise words to heed. But then, like now, I needed to find my own path.  If I knew in my heart it was the right  thing, I learned to tune out the criticism.  I have come up with enough reasons to feel guilty all on my own.
  5. In general, I have learned to avoid negative and cynical people.  Like drowning victims, they tend to pull a person down right with them.
  6. The more trustworthy I am, the easier time I have trusting others.
  7. Authenticity is an unbeatable quality.
  8. So is loyalty.
  9. No one is perfect, no matter how it might appear to the onlooker.
  10. The more settled I am in my own life, the less interested I am in finding flaws in someone else’s.
  11. Admitting I am wrong and asking for forgiveness can be crazy scary, but totally worth it, no matter what the outcome is.
  12. Parenting is so much harder and more complicated than I ever imagined it would be (and I just ignore when people say “just wait, it gets harder”- I truly believe each stage has it’s own set of unique challenges).
  13. The depth of love I have for my children is beyond words.  Sometimes it takes my breath away.
  14. My family knows me better than I’d sometimes like to admit, and their love is all the more meaningful and truer because of it.
  15. Joy can be found in the simplest, most mundane moments, and can be totally elusive in the big, fancy ones.
  16. Meekness and submissiveness are not signs of weakness, but of a deep, inner strength.
  17. Rolling up my sleeves and getting to work often feels better than I think it will.
  18. Ten minutes of praying about something often goes much farther than three hours of talking about it.
  19. Friendships come in many different forms, some can be quite surprising.  Some friendships only last a season, and that’s OK.  They can still be of lasting value.
  20. No one gets to define me.
  21. Very close beneath the surface of anger is often hurt or fear.
  22. Grief and loss are inevitable.  There has been no way to prepare for them, I have simply learned to live through them and learn through the process.
  23. I don’t underestimate the healing properties of a good run, a good cry,a good laugh, a hot bath, or listening to a favorite piece of music.  Or all of the above.
  24. Time alone is essential and I cherish it.
  25. I am married to my best friend- we have been able to laugh, cry, fight, and love our way through anything.
  26. I cannot expect from others what I am not prepared to give.
  27. “Fake it till you make it” is sometimes the best way to go.
  28. I was not meant to carry others burdens and they were not meant to carry mine.  But a true friend can. shoulder the load for a bit and be company for the journey.
  29. Joy is more complete because of the pain I have felt.
  30. Doing something kind goes a long way to putting me in a better mood.
  31. A good book can soothe the soul.
  32. There is always more to learn.
  33. When meeting new people, I have learned its best to ask good questions and then really listen.  If all I do is talk about myself or what I know, I  have gained nothing.
  34. For every study that says coffee and chocolate are bad for me, there’s another one that says they will help me live longer (or at least smile more).
  35. Discontentment is a nothing but a joy-killer.
  36. It can be tempting at times to focus primarily on our strengths, and other times on our struggles..  But I have found the highest value lies in sharing honestly about struggles we have faced and how we have become stronger for the challenge   (and by the grace of God).
  37. Love really does cover over a multitude of sins.
  38. I have learned to go to church not just to be fed, but to feed.
  39. Just when I think I have life figured out, something happens to humble the socks off of me.
  40. It is good to have people in my life who challenge me, and good to have those who are a safe place to land.  I treasure beyond measure the people in my life who are both.
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Filed under Christian living, Examining life

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