Thoughts On Turning 65

Today, December 23, I turn 65.

I’m officially a senior citizen.  I guess that means yesterday I was a junior citizen.

God has been faithful to me beyond my comprehension. At this time of year I ponder just how much God has loved me over the past six-and-a-half decades. He has extricated me from countless harmful situations in the middle of some of the worst blunders in my life. I have fallen down so many times scar tissue covers both knees. I have been unfaithful to God and others, lackadaisical in my prayer life, selfish beyond the pale, full of my own flesh, disrespectful of others, arrogant, and more.

The good news is, when I wake up tomorrow, God’s mercies will be new. He won’t remember my wrongs from yesterday. He will still be faithful, loving and kind towards me as if none of those things above ever occurred. That’s the priceless love He gives me freely every single day.

I love to think about my childhood and family life

I grew up in a small Southwest Iowa town, Shenandoah, population about 5,000. I attended one elementary school, one junior high school and one high school with about 30 or 40 of the same kids, kindergarten through high school. My mom and dad met in sixth grade, but didn’t start dating until high school. They stayed married to each other for 60 years. Both sets of grandparents lived within five miles.

I felt safe, loved, well educated and nurtured by my family, my teachers and my community. It was a wonderful childhood in a wonderful place with a wonderful family.

After high school during college I became the poster child for the prodigal son. Backsliding was not an occasional slip into sin, it became a lifestyle. I squandered more opportunities than most folks get in a lifetime. It would be almost 30 years before God would tap me on the shoulder in the middle of a driving rain. He said, “I want you to come back home now. I love you and I miss you. On that dark, rainy night I began a baby-step return to my Father.

I finally let go of self and started depending on Him to live His life in me, through me and as me.  He taught me that during those rebellious years I was living in a pig sty, He still loved me.

I finally became sanctifiable, submissive, teachable, ready for Him to use me.  And now He teaches me something new about Himself and myself almost every day. I still slip into sin occasionally. I still have the freedom to choose between His way and my way.  Sometimes my way seems better than His. The difference is, today when my flesh (that ugly thing called “self”) creeps back into my thinker or my chooser, the Holy Spirit convicts me that my behavior is not consistent with who I am in Christ. Then He gives me the opportunity to correct my course.

It has been a wonderful life. Am I rich? Not in the material sense. Never have been. But I am rich in God’s love and I have at my disposal all the grace and mercy I will ask for from my Heavenly Father. God gave me a wonderful wife. Finally. I have two adorable, loving children (well, young adults now). I have a brand new heart (Literally. I had open heart surgery on January 26 and got a brand new valve and aorta.) and a new life. I have Christ living in me and through me to bring me bountiful blessings. And our God receives all the glory and honor.

What more could an old senior citizen want?

I’m taking a sabbatical from my blog for a few days. My Son is coming to visit from Montgomery, Alabama. He will spend Christmas weekend with us (See? What’d I tell you about blessings?). Most of our family will be here and I’m going to spend the time loving them and receiving God’s bounty.

I wish you all a Merry, Blessed, it’s-all-about Jesus Christmas. You will never know what a blessing all of you are who drop in and read these devotionals. May God richly bless you.

Would you like to know more about Jesus and the grace and salvation He offers any and everyone who will believe in Him and claim Him as Savior? God wants to bless you and show you his unconditional love. He wants you to know the true meaning of Christmas. Jesus would like to show you all His grace and mercy. If you would like to know more about Jesus, or give your life to Him, just Follow this link and  discover the awesome, unconditional love He has waiting for you.

If you enjoyed reading this message I urge you to leave a comment.  We bloggers live and breathe by the comments we get. Why not subscribe to my blog? That way you won’t miss any posts. You’ll get an email notification every time I post.  Just go to the home page. At the top of the page on the right side, under EMAIL SUBSCRIPTION click on Sign Me Up!

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About Steven Sawyer

God blessed me with the gift of writing. Mom told me I wrote paragraphs in second grade when others were learning to write sentences. I spent more than three decades in professional writing gigs. For the past eight years I've combined my passion for writing with my love for the Lord. He and I write a Christ-centered, family-friendly blog to glorify God Monday-thru Friday at https://stevensawyer.wordpress.com/. My wife and I have four grown children and two precious granddaughters we co-parent with their mom. I'm a Galatians 2:20 disciple of Christ seeking to allow Christ to live His life in me, through me, and as me.

9 thoughts on “Thoughts On Turning 65

  1. Happy Birthday Steve! I really enjoyed reading this post and thank you for sharing your wonderful testimony. I pray you are richly blessed in the time with your family and may all of you share much JOY over the holiday season. Can’t wait to connect again my friend 🙂 Blessings in Christ and Christian love to you and your lovely wife!

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  2. Happy birthday, ol’ high school classmate! One of the real blessings of being 65 is having the confidence to write about our spiritual journeys. Of course, having faced our own mortality in recent times helps us do that, too. Maybe what’s best about having an active spiritual life, at our age, is the peace and acceptance that comes with it. Have a Merry Chrsitmas and a Happy New Year, and I look forward to being in touch more in 2012. Between now and then, please cheer for my Vanderbilt Commodores in the Liberty Bowl — we’ll be there!

    Chuck Offenburger

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  3. Wow Steve. Happy birthday. The LORD has indeed been faithful to you. I would have never known you have entered seniorhood because the LORD has been very faithful to you on your looks too. You look like you are in your forties, what’s the secret? I bet it’s serving the LORD and eating right and exercising. You are a blessing to the body of Christ. Have a great Christmas.

    Blessings,
    Daniel

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  4. Woohoo! Welcome to Seniorhood:)

    What a great testimony. God is so faithful to get us back on course. Hope you have a wonderful time with your family. We’re having a big party with all our family tonight and then it’s just me and Jason and the kids for Christmas. We’re looking forward to spending time together with our kids. It will be nice.

    Have a blessed Christmas!

    Amanda

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  5. Happy Happy Birthday Steve. I know the feeling of turning 65. I started attending the Senior’s Luncheon at my church when I retired in 2007 at 62. When I finally turned 65, I stood up when they were recognizing birthdays and announced that I was now a legitimate member of the Seniors…everyone laughed. Dare I say, it only gets better and better cause I love the Lord and I thank Him every morning on my knees when I wake up and every evening before I crawl into bed. I can’t wait to celebrate His birthday….Merry Christmas Steve to you and your family.

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  6. Steve, happy happy birthday 🙂 Thanks for the devotionals and for your faith – inspiring so many, most of all, me. I pray God will bless you abundantly with His grace and love renewing each day. Regards to your family and enjoy the holidays! 🙂

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