I got more phone calls within a two hour period of time on my birthday than I thought possible. It was during that “driving home from work” time of day, so many were rolled over to voicemail while I was chatting away.
The longest conversation was with my niece, Avery. That girl is a hoot. We chatted for 45 minutes about my age, Riley’s age, dreams of what she’ll do someday and inventions that would make life simpler. We talked about her ideas for a flying car that would have purified air so I could ride in it, and I told her she should write that idea down so she doesn’t forget about it. She said, “Oh, I’ll make a blueprint since it’s an invention. Isn’t it sad how people forget what they want to do when they grow up? People always say they are going to remember but they always forget. But you and I don’t forget things because we do art and write and stuff so we always remember.”
That girl’s a future blogger just waiting to happen.
I love the mind of a nine year old. At the end of the conversation she said, “Happy belated birthday, Aunt Sara!” I explained that it wasn’t belated since we were talking on my birthday and she said, “Oh, I know. I just think belated is a fun word to say.”
Who can argue with that? :)
One of the calls that got sent to voicemail was from my Aunt Janella. I look forward to that call every year because she and her husband Ron usually sing to me, and they have the best harmonies. This year, when I listened to the message, I was surprised because the loudest voice singing was my Grandpa Gerald. He went to the nursing home this past year, and some days he’s more on target with remembering people than others.
But on my birthday, he sounded great. After I listened to him sing, I called them back and he wished me a happy birthday and informed me that “my old man” was there earlier to give him a haircut. I can’t tell you what a gift getting to have a good conversation with him was to me. But the truth is, whether he knows me on any given day or not, who he is hasn’t changed a bit. He’s still Grandpa.
It made me think of a phrase that has been running through my mind since I heard Pete say it in his Easter sermon this year: Base your faith off of God’s identity, not His activity.
Yeah, let that settle in your mind for a minute.
How often we think of what God can do for us… what He hasn’t been doing for us… what we desire and ask for and expect. But what we should care most about is who He is. His identity. What we can do for His glory.
I hope that I remember that more often than not as I continue on this journey. Just like my Grandpa’s identity is more essential to me that what he can or cannot do on any given day, I pray that in the next year I focus more on God’s identity and my role in His purpose than on what I expect His activity in my life to be.
Because sometimes His activity can be masked by life’s toll. But faith is knowing that, regardless of how things may seem, who He is never falters.