Becoming the Older Woman

A photo by Autumn Mott. unsplash.com/photos/SPd9CSoWCkY

As I sit outside in the crisp morning air, I watch the golden and scarlet leaves gently falling from the trees. They descend without a sound, yet their falling is announcing the changing of another new season. My life right now isn’t so very different from that silently falling leaf.

I turned 45 years old this year.

Yes, I said it. I am middle-aged. I know, I know…all the sayings, some of which I have even said myself – you’re only as old as you feel or age is just a number or age is a state of mind – these all come to mind.

Yes. Yes. and Yes.

I know that in my head, but my heart and body are what needs a little more convincing at times.

There are many mornings when I will battle with my body as I roll out of bed and realize it takes me a little longer to work out the creaks in my knees than six months ago or the coloring of my gray is coming more often than last year.

There are many days when I will battle with my heart over this thing called aging, mostly in the battle of wondering if what I have been doing over these past 45 years is enough. Enough to be used to make a difference and praying I am not wasting precious time. A few years ago, I really became convicted by Titus 2. You know, where we are taught in scripture that the “older women” are to encourage and teach the “younger women.” I looked in the mirror not too long ago and came to realize, I am the older woman.

Older. What does that really look like?

It looks like the changing seasons.

It looks like Winter. You have lived enough life to know and understand and be able to empathize with others when they walk through dry, hard, cold seasons. Seasons involving job loss, moves, divorce, loss of loved ones…

It looks like Spring. You have lived enough life to know that winters are really just a season of preparation for what is to come next, fully realizing that some of the most beautiful things can grow from our harshest winters.

It looks like Summer. You have lived enough life to know that carefree seasons of play and popsicles and sandcastles come to allow refreshment and recharging.

and

It looks like Autumn. You have lived enough life to know that Autumns come in slowly, ushering in the beginning of another beautiful display in our lives. And even though it may only last for a moment before those colorful moments silently drift into the next season, they are a gift.

So, as I continue to sit and watch those autumn leaves fall this morning, there is something we all need to know. “Older” in the sense of Titus 2 isn’t just speaking of age. It is speaking of wisdom gained from years of walking with the Lord and simply living enough life to be used for the good of others for His glory!

I, and every other woman that considers herself to be in this older category, have work to do in our coming seasons. Sisters, we have to continue to grow in our knowledge and understanding of the Lord because He has plans for us! Precious plans for us to not only be enough for the women He brings into our lives, but in some circumstances, to be exactly what they need!

So today, I will embrace the slower moving body and the gray hairs and rejoice in the fact that I am here to see another season of falling leaves as they usher in my next season…the gift of being able to be an encourager to someone younger than me, not really because I am enough, but because the One who created me and every single one of my gray hairs is!

 

{Originally written for http://www.sacredholidays.com blog on 10-17-16}

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