Boots and Bells
I’m still not sure why I bought them. Probably because the sweet shop owner told me they looked good on me. It was an impulse buy, and they’ve hung in my closet for weeks now. Out of desperation because the weekend antics kept me from doing the laundry, I put them on.
I looked in the mirror and thought, Someone will probably think I’m too old for these.
I won’t forget that morning in the bathroom when I was considering some social media news and shrugged. That’s a middle aged thing. I glanced in the mirror and it hit me like a tidal wave. Wait a second. Middle aged? Exactly what year do you become middle aged? I did the calculations in my head. Oh! My! Goodness! That’s me. I’m middle aged!
All my life I’ve heard about reaching middle age, and it didn’t sound like something to look forward to. It seemed as if some internal ticking time bomb would explode and leave all kinds of destruction in its wake. Complete with hot flashes, and racked nerves, and lest we forget the dreaded mid-life crisis.
That morning in the bathroom middle age was just another season. I didn’t really feel different or ready to explode in some way. Although a few years back I did buy a Jeep so maybe that was due to my middle age. I’ll admit I look at the future at times and wonder if I’ve already lived the best years, but this is not new for me either.
So it seems middle age has crept in with little fanfare until this morning. Standing in the mirror looking at my newly purchased bell bottom jeans, I struggle. Am I too old for these? At what age is trendy not allowed? What will others think? Will they laugh and comment I’m not acting my age?
I sigh loud and put on my boots. No question about what to wear on my feet. In my world boots go with any outfit and any occasion. As I head out the door I giggle, my morning fashion is the outward sign of my inward struggle.
This, friends is the middle aged dilemma. Knowing who we are, and embracing who we are becoming. It’s a letting go of what’s been and trusting God’s work in this moment, this season. It’s falling leaves on tender green grass and bells with boots.
Its giving thanks in it all. For when we do, the light inside shines bright for all to see.
Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine!
–Matthew 5:16, The Message