By Stephen Leonard
“This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24
The day of your birth is a memorable day to you, to your spouse, your mother, particularly, your children and others. It was not the day when we came into being. That was an average of nine months earlier. But then you were in God’s mind from before the “foundation of the earth,” however long ago that was. It is a long time to be in someone’s thoughts, namely God!
We had no memories of our birth-day when they happened. We remember nothing of our bodies being formed in the womb. On the other end of things, near our last breath on this earth, some of us have no memories of that either, such as being taken from us in dementia.
But we do remember our own birthdays throughout our lives and the fact that in most cases, they are celebrated, at least by some. A song. A cake and ice cream. A special meal. Some cards and some gifts. Even blowing out candles.
What do birthdays remind you of? Certainly, you are one year older. Such time this side of Jesus’ return never stops. Like “an ever rolling stream,” it continues to carry us ever closer to heaven. Perhaps it is a reminder to you that you were born in time due to a God who chose to create you and who saw your unformed body before your parents ever did. He sees you, knows you from before the foundation of the world to your formation in the womb, throughout your entire life, to your death, and into eternity.
If no one else celebrates your birthday, God certainly does. The Bible says the death of His saints are precious to Him. It says you are loved while you are still a sinner. It says that God has a deep and abiding love for you: so much so, that He sent His beloved Son to die on a cross for you.
Birthdays are a thing of this life. They mark the years of your sojourn on earth. The years of your life under the sun which pertain to your days in which your salvation and adoption become a reality. Days in which your eternity is secured by the grace of God. It is why this life is so vitally important in the plan of God. Your relationship to God and His Son becomes a reality to celebrate, even more than your physical birthday. It is so much more important to become a child of the King. This is the second birth for which to give eternal hallelujahs to God and to the Savior.
Tomorrow the 12th of August, is my wife’s 81st Birthday. God has mightily blessed her for 8 decades, which were invested since her teenage years almost totally into the life of the Paul Anderson Youth Home. She has given her whole life to its founding, growth, and sustainment. And she regularly gives all the glory to God daily, recognizing that He has done it. 81 years serving faithfully in lean and full years. Praise be to God!
Birthdays are always, more than anything else, the celebration of God’s work, care, and love in and for us. Happy Birthday, Glenda Anderson Leonard!
“The Lord you know is God indeed; without our aid He did us make; we are His folk, He doth us feed, and for His sheep, He doth us take.”
(2nd verse of William Kethe’s versification of Psalm 100, 1561)