Earlier this year I turned 50. If you’ve already been down this road, you, too, likely had a number of people predict a tough year for you. Prior to my birthday, people directed comments my way about how tough it would be to hit that milestone birthday: “It’s the beginning of the end.” “You’re approaching the second half.” “It’s not fun being over the hill.” “It felt like my body suddenly got 10 years older in a day.” … and so on.
It wasn’t very encouraging. Of course, some people were just teasing. I know who those folks were and I didn’t think anything of their comments. The others, though, were rather serious about their pessimism regarding the “Big 5-0.” They were clearly discouraged with being 50+ and wanted me to share in their misery.
But a funny thing happened on my birthday.
I had a great day! The following weeks and months were great, too.
My birthday started out just like any other day, but it ended on a high note with the clear understanding that being 50 would have its benefits and that I could expect great things in the Lord this year and in the coming years. Over the coming weeks, I developed anticipation for what would come but a clear sense of peace and patience with it.
That was the odd part and it was what told me that God’s hand was on my 50th. Those who know me best know I am not patient for change to occur and that when I see something exciting ahead, I push forward. God, though, clearly developed a sense of peace and patience in my heart.
It has been quite comfortable waiting on the Lord in 2014. I’ve focused on growing closer to Him and on being obedient to Him in each moment of the day.
As a result, in the past 9 months, I’ve felt much less stress and worry and I feel closer to God as well as my family. I have a greater understanding of and appreciation for the gifts God has given me (both tangible and intangible). I’ve developed a renewed hunger for scripture and prayer. I have a greater sense of clarity and insight about decisions and situations. A big help in all of this has been my discipleship journey with my brothers in Resolute. (Never before in my life have I been excited to get up at 5a on Mondays for a 6a meeting.)
Most of 2014 has been about waiting on God and trusting Him in my post-50 journey for His timing. It has also been about clearing away unproductive emotional, mental, and physical commitments. Some of those decisions have been rather difficult, but each one has produced fruit.
So what’s next?
Specifically? I don’t know yet. I’m still waiting on God as he continues to prepare me. I sense significant changes on the horizon either professionally, or in ministry, or in both.
I know that every moment I spend in prayer and in the Word brings me closer to His plan. I know that stronger relationships in my family and with friends will support whatever the future holds. I know that refinement of my emotional, mental, and physical health will equip me for that work.
Whether you hit a milestone birthday or not, look back on your own 2014. Perhaps you, too, had a turning point year and have anticipation for the coming months. Or, perhaps your 2014 was filled with frustration and pain. (If so, drop me a note, I’d like to pray for you, specifically.) If 2014 was a tough year, I encourage you to do one thing: Turn to God. Ask for patience and peace that comes only from trusting that He understands and that He has a plan.
Either way, I pray that 2015 is a year that God reveals himself in very real and tangible ways to each of you. We appreciate each and every one of our readers!
Happy New Year!
Dr. Scott Yorkovich is a leadership coach and consultant. He works with individuals, small and medium organizations, and ministries. Contact him at ScottYorkovich[at]LeadStrategic.com with your questions.
Photo by author.