Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Aging is not a disease. It's a privilege.

Recently I was part of a "virtual" four day seminar via the web (also known as a "webinar") called, "A Woman Inspired." Shelley Ballestero taught a course on caring for our bodies, inside and out. These words from her seminar stuck with me. "Aging is not a disease. It's a privilege."

Okay, here's a different perspective. Aging is a privilege? Wow. I like that. Living in a culture where youth seems to be valued above all else, what is there about aging that deems it a privilege? I decided to think on this one a bit. I just had a birthday and I can use some thoughts on the benefits of aging.

Somewhere along the way, aging was given a negative label. Sure we all know that certain things decline...but some of that can be prevented, which was precisely what her seminar was about. We have remarkable bodies, no doubt about it. Our Creator designed us with a mind-boggling precision. With multiple systems, all working at once and functionally intertwined, our bodies are amazingly crafted. But there are other parts of us too, not just the physical, that deserve equal attention, our emotions and our spirits are part of who we are and play into how we live on this earth.

My mom died at 45 and I realize how much longer I've lived than she did. I've watched my children graduate from high school, college and get married. What a gift! Everyday I get up and have a chance to take care of and make the most of what God has given body, emotions, and my spirit. I have to admit that I don't always view each day as an opportunity. People who have had near death experiences say they cherish each new day in a fresh way unlike those of us who may take rising each morning for granted.

One of the things I like about getting older is that I have more perspective. I've noticed how things play out over the course of time. I've observed cause and effect and have learned from that.

There is a verse in the Bible, Proverbs 2:10-11 which says, "For wisdom will enter your heart and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul. Discretion will protect you and understanding will guard you."

Perspective is something I wouldn't trade for my youth (most days!)

Photo: Marzanna Syncerz

Monday, May 4, 2009

Participating with the inevitable is the opposite of denial.

I was listening to a re-play of one of the Dave Ramsey shows, the financial guy on Fox Business News. On this particular broadcast Dave was giving advice to a woman who was irritated with her live-in boyfriend who'd obviously enjoyed playing with all the toys she'd purchased during their six year engagement. She finally was taking steps to get herself out of debt and to stop paying most of the bills and has begun letting him pay his share.

The caller was making statements about the fact that if her fiance doesn't change by the time she pays off her debt, the relationship is over. During the course of the conversation, Dave made the statement, "we need to participate with the inevitable." His point here was that the boyfriend has already shown himself to be who he is and the fact that she continues to wait 6 years for a marriage (no wedding date in sight,) to wait for him to begin to show concern about his quickly growing debt (now that she's not taking care of him anymore) and to wait to see him take some action is not "participating in the inevitable." He said "the opposite of denial is participating in the inevitable."

How often do we postpone the inevitable rather than facing it for what it is! I think we can all relate to that in some way. Whether it's a money issue or some way that we need to take action to change a relationship, an unhealthy lifestyle, a spending habit, a job...the term "participating" means taking action and refusing to dwell in denial any longer. Something for all of us to think about.

Money continues to be the factor that contributes to the majority of divorces. The pressure of financial issues takes its toll on relationships.

Dave Ramsey promotes the concept of living debt free. It's like getting rid of a ball and chain!

You can check out Dave's website and his resources at: