For my 40th birthday (which wasn’t all that long ago), God Himself gave me a very special gift … a life verse.
The term life verse is taken directly from the “Dictionary of Christian~ese.” Okay, not really. However, if you don’t frequent churches or are perhaps new to the faith, then it is quite possible that you aren’t familiar with this terminology. Life verse basically refers to a scripture that is deeply personal, and perhaps when you read it you feel as though God is leaning down and whispering directly into your ear. Life verses tend to address a theme that appears over and over again in your life, telling of how God has worked in you or through you. It’s like the mission statement of your life.
So back to my 40th birthday and my gift from God, which was, as I said previously, my life verse. The back story is that I had always wanted a life verse. I can’t tell you the number of times I had prayed and asked God for a wonderful life verse. Over the years, I had scriptures that I loved and held particularly close to my heart, but I knew that none of them were my life verse. In fact, I had finally reached the conclusion that I probably was one of those people who just didn’t have a life verse. On top of that, I was turning 40, which was turning out not to be all that fun. I suppose I felt old and useless as I approached what was likely the second half of my life.
Anyway, a sweet friend of mine, who was keenly aware of my emotional struggles (at least the part about turning 40) gave me a birthday sunshine box … a box filled with a week’s worth of small tokens and treasures, one to open each day. Each small gift was wrapped and on the outside was a scripture that gave a clue as to what was inside. Each morning I allowed the children to pick a gift so that we could all guess as to what might be inside.
As the morning of my birthday dawned, I have to admit that did not feel like it was in any way a happy day. My husband was working out of town. And frankly, I just wanted to pull the sheets over my head and sleep the day away. But before the sun was very high in the sky, those five lively kids of mine were singing the birthday song and pulling the next gift out of my sunshine birthday box. And the gift they placed in my hand that morning was wrapped up and tied with a ribbon that was attached to a card containing the following words that changed my life.
The instant I read those words, I knew it was my life verse. I’ve always loved to write. It’s how I express myself. It’s how I find myself. Moreover, it’s how I find God. In my youth and young adulthood, I wrote for me. But in my 30’s, I had found joy in learning to write for God … to please Him and to share His love through words. Truthfully, I longed to do more with my writing, but I had no idea what or how. So for God Himself to reveal to me a plan for my future that included writing … well, for once, words fail me.
Since that September morning, I’ve been praying in a knock, seek, ask sort of way. I’m daring to dream and believing that God has plans to use me by allowing me to write for Him. It’s the start of something new … not because I’m new to writing, but rather I’m new to believing that my writing is useful to God and to His purposes. I’m new to dreaming that He will take my writing places I never dreamed it might go. And I’m new to expecting God to use my writing to encourage others, especially ordinary women just like me, to know Him more.