“How old are you?”
I have been thinking….I have noticed that we tend to get tangled up in things that don’t matter. Concepts of the way things should be, for no apparent reason at all. Don’t get me wrong: There’s a time and place for everything (Ecclesiastes teaches that.) And there are certainly things the Bible prohibits at certain times/places (for example: 1Corinthians 14:34-35). But there are a LOT of things that we hold onto that are not commanded in the Bible. I don’t really know why we hold to them so tightly. But we do. And today, seeing it is my birthday, I want to address one of them:
I started thinking about this a week or two ago. Why does it matter what I say my age is? I get that “17” tells you how many years I’ve lived on earth by the generally-accepted calendar dates and doctor-written times. But what does that matter? What does that mean? What bearing does it have? Isn’t our age just a number? If a certain lady wants to call herself 29 for the rest of her life, what does it matter? If I want to refer to my age in line with my schooling*, what does it matter? It has no effect on my life, really (as for the age to vote/drink/etc., I care for none of them). It leaves no mark on others. So, what does it matter how old I am or what my default age is? The truth is: I don’t think it does.
As I thought more on this, I started seeing something I had previously only seen glimpses of. What if maturity is the important thing here anyway? Honestly, as I look around, I realize that maturity seems to be lost for most western countries. What if we viewed the 50-year-old who is living like a teenager as a little girl and the 12-year-old who is living like a young lady as a woman? I think that would be the more accurate description—not how long we’ve lived.
So, today, if you ask me how old I am, I will ask you this question: “Do you want my elected age or my default age?” Because the truth is: it doesn’t really matter. But for myself I ask, “Am I a young lady, becoming a woman, more meek and quiet and mature daily for the Lord?” This is the question I ponder today. Not how old I am.
*I am homeschooled. I made the decision to split my 11th and 12th grade years into two years each for various reasons. We call my remaining years 11a, 11b, 12a, and 12b. I’m currently on 11b. So, by my elected age, I would be 16b this year, 17a next year, and 17b the next year. Then, I’ll turn 18 and go on my merry way. 🙂 But, by my default age (a.k.a. “normal”), I turn 17 this year. ^~^
[Picture is from http://www.wordbypicture.com/age-is-just-a-number-quotes/___bWVkaWEtY2FjaGUtZWMwKnBpbmltZypjb218NzM2eHxiOXwyNHw2N3xiOTI0NjdkNDE2ZDMxNmFiZDRhNGI0ODFiZmJkZGYwNipqcGc_Y2FyLW1lbWVzKmNvbXxhZ2UtaXMtanVzdC1hLW51bWJlci1xdW90ZXN8/%5D