Birthdays are Life-Long Learning Opportunities

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever”.

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I’ve had another birthday so, as always, I reflected on the past years of God’s goodness and faithfulness with gratitude. Psalm 107:1 says:

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever”.

I continually find this to be true year after year. So, this year I also challenged myself to see if I could make a list of life lessons learnt for each of my over sixty years on earth.

Surprisingly, I was able to do it and, guess what! The lessons reached sixty and kept on coming. I was reminded that life is truly a gift; a present to be continually unwrapped and shared. It’s the gift that keeps on giving. I’ve learnt that no matter what the circumstance or obstacle is, there is a lesson, a blessing or a nugget to teach us, correct us and redirect us.

I strive to live with intentionality and determination even more and to be healthy enough to accomplish God’s purpose in my life.  I’ve learnt that there truly are no U-hauls behind hearses and that the only things that we get to take with us when we leave earth are the souls that we spoke into and influenced, causing them to renew their minds and to accept Christ as Savior!  

So, let me give you the gift of my Lord and Savior, the gift that keeps on giving.

And, the birthday gift that you can give to me is your choice to take control of your lives; your mental, physical, and spiritual health; to be good stewards of your time and bodies; and not to be afraid of leaving your comfort zones when it comes to diet, exercise, and mindsets.  

My other gift to you is some of the life lessons that I have personally experienced: 

  1. It really is true: This, too, shall pass.
  2. Troubles really “don’t last always”.
  3. Just like my mom always said, we need to love people like possessions.
  4. Listen twice as much as you speak.
  5. Your body speaks to you. Listen to it because it doesn’t lie!
  6. We can dig our graves with a fork, like my father always said.
  7. Don’t share your dreams with dream slayers.
  8. Never stop learning,
  9. God has a purpose and a plan for your life.
  10. Forgive.
  11. Grow at your own pace.
  12. Let God order your steps.
  13. Live life with intentionality.
  14. Buy things because you need them, not to show off or keep up with the Joneses. The Joneses packed up and moved because they learned better.
  15. Drink at least 8 glasses of water daily and stay hydrated.
  16. Prayer really changes things.
  17. It’s not all about you.
  18. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  19. Don’t let the sun go down on your wrath. Don’t let anger fester into a wound.
  20. Think before you speak.
  21. Smile. 
  22. Laugh often.
  23. Play, stay youthful and look at God’s creation with awe.
  24. Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.
  25. Eat a healthy diet as part of a healthy lifestyle. 
  26. Exercise and incorporate movement in your day.
  27. Remember that your life speaks volumes.
  28. Travel and see some of God’s creation.
  29. Sticks and stones break bones and words hurt you.
  30. Don’t gossip. Remember that a dog that carries a bone will bring a bone.
  31. Guard your reputation.
  32. Use a budget and spend wisely.
  33. Love unconditionally.
  34. Remember that someone is always watching you.
  35. Don’t count your chickens before they hatch. 
  36. A bird in the hand is better than many in the bush.
  37. Your grass will be as green as that on the other side if you water it.
  38. Change is inevitable.
  39. Action speaks louder than words.
  40. Be consistent, committed, and persistent.
  41. Make lemonade when life deals you lemons. Go a step further; put up a lemonade stand, sell the lemonade and make a profit.
  42. Build your life on a firm foundation.
  43. Self care comes before others care.
  44. Incorporate movement in your day.
  45. Your health is your wealth.
  46. Pictures are memory-making gold.
  47. Hug loved ones often.
  48. Tell loved ones you love them daily, more often is better.  
  49. Unclutter your life, mind, and body.
  50. Live a F.A.T. free life – Free of foods, Attitudes that harm you, and Toxic people, places and things that steal your joy and peace.
  51. Count your blessings daily.
  52. Make your beauty routine as low maintenance as possible.
  53. Eat lots of fruits and vegetables.
  54. Get regular physical checkups.
  55. Know your physical numbers – a1c, blood pressure, weight.
  56. Get rid of/donate things you haven’t used or worn within the last 3-6 months because someone else needs them.
  57. Give back/ volunteer your time to others.
  58. Get at least 7-8 hours of sleep/night.
  59. Listen to understand, not just to get your point across.
  60. Be able to label your emotions and speak them rather than act them out. Use your words.
  61. Be aware of your thoughts and choose what you will focus on.
  62. Use wisdom.
  63. Be grateful.
  64. Wait patiently on the Lord.
  65. Make disciples of all men; don’t count anyone out.
  66. Share with others. Don’t hoard.
  67. Think before you speak and be aware of your thoughts at all times.
  68. Save for emergencies.
  69. Accept loss as a part of life.
  70. Don’t sweat the small stuff!

These are only a few of the life lessons that I have learned thus far. Life will continually present challenges and lessons to us. Expect them and be proactive with learning from them.

Remember, the lessons that you don’t learn from will have to be repeated. I look forward to being able to continue to speak life into you and share more lessons with you.

And, Happy, thankful birthday to me! Send comments and questions to Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, You Tube and LinkedIn.  Check out my website  Until the next issue, choose to live life with intentionality while choosing to be healthy, wealthy and wise. Be blessed.

Rena Canady-Laster

Author, Trainer, and Life Coach

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