my birthday – a personal reflection

Long ago (I can’t recall when) I began to see my birthday as another day

in my life; one, as all those before, rife

with the joys unbounded and sorrows abundant

that existence in this earthly sphere makes us all heir.

Sirin and Alkonost, The Birds of Joy and Sorrow (1896), Viktor Mikhaylovich Vasnetsov (1848-1926)

Some, these joys and sorrows, reside within me, verily, ineluctably.

And as I live with me, I’m daily privy, unavoidably,

to my every emotion of elation and lamentation,

every expression of commendation and malediction,

every thought of dignity and infamy,

every doubt about decency

in and of the world and in me…

confess - regret

 

And on those days when I most behold within me my shadow and not the Son’s lovelight, then it’s difficult for me to celebrate, even with enthusiasm slight, my birthday.

 

Now, your birthdays –

whoever you are (whether I know you best or least, for I honor all of you as God’s handiwork, thus, even on your worst day, creations gracious and glorious)  –

are special days for me, granting me annual opportunities to give thanks for you.

thinking

 

Hmmm, why is it so hard for me to give to me what I easily offer to you?

 

 

Detail - The Hands from the fresco, The Creation of Adam (1511-1512), Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (1475-1564)

A fellow blogger (I read her religiously) writes candidly courageously of her insights into her struggles with her life and herself; arriving at a place and time where and when, even on her worst day, she can behold her very self as a gracious, glorious work of God. For her to deny the truth of which the psalmist sings that she is fearfully and wonderfully made would be to disown her faith in God and dishonor her hope in God. I’ve not shared with her how much, how often she, in her sincerely honorable and searingly honest self-acceptance, testifies to me of a fitting response to God’s love, as Isaac Watts penned, “so amazing, so divine (that) demands my soul, my life, my all.”

So, on this my natal day anniversary, forsaking not again my gratitude to God, I give to me what I easily give to you and wish myself the happiest birthday!

PRA 6-7-16

 

Illustrations:

Sirin and Alkonost, The Birds of Joy and Sorrow (1896), Viktor Mikhaylovich Vasnetsov (1848-1926)

Detail – The Hands from the fresco, The Creation of Adam (1511-1512), Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (1475-1564)

 

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2 thoughts on “my birthday – a personal reflection

  1. Paul,

    I’m thrilled that you’ve been able to finally give to yourself what you give so freely of to others! Your gratitude to God is obvious to those who know you, but it’s great that you’re honoring that gratitude today and happily recognizing and relishing the day you were born, a truly amazing day indeed!!

    Like you, I too have bloggers I read faithfully who inspire me when I’m not feeling inspired, and I believe I’ve shared with you that you’re one of them. Your sermons move me to action, your praise makes me believe I can move mountains, and your heartfelt apologies and confessions make you easy to forgive. The birthday greetings you’ve given me over the years are ones that I cherish because the words you choose in your birthday greetings challenge me to fully understand your meaning and more times than not teaches me words I either didn’t know or hadn’t seen in a long time.

    So on this your birthday, know that even when you don’t give to yourself what you give to so many others, all of those who consider you special are bestowing upon you from near and far the happiest wishes on this day and always!

    Like

    • “…Your sermons move me to action, your praise makes me believe I can move mountains…” That I can do and have done that for one so bounteously gifted and beautifully graced to do good as you is higher praise than I deserve, but which I cherish and accept. Thank you, Loretta.

      Liked by 1 person

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