Advice As I’m Approaching 30

In a few weeks, I’ll join Steph in the “30 and up” club.

I’m not expecting to wake up on August 8th and suddenly feel different because the first digit in my age has changed, but crossing the 30 barrier seems significant to me.

Most of the things that are “impressive” for someone “in their 20’s” are just expected for someone “in their 30’s”.

Kids, a mortgage, a savings account… nobody’s impressed when someone in their 30’s has those ducks in a row.

So I’m not quite freaking out, but this birthday has my attention.

How on earth am I 30 years old?

I swear I still feel like I could be in high school.

I hear John Mayer sing about “a quarter-life crisis”, and suddenly realize that the quarter-life crisis ship sailed FIVE YEARS AGO!

So turning 30 has me doing some reflecting, and also noticing things that I never used to think much about.

These days, when I go for a run and my knees bother me, I think,

“I have to keep these things working well for like 25 more years if I want to play sports with my kids when they’re in college… even LONGER if I want to play with my grandkids!

That’s like longer than I’ve been alive so far!

WAIT. NO, IT ISN’T! AHHHHH!”

(Don’t judge me… I have 2 toddlers and a pregnant wife)

Back to my rant:

It’s interesting to me that most of the folks in the Bible who did cool stuff didn’t do it until their 30’s.

The Bible basically says nothing about Jesus between ages 12 and 30.

David was anointed king as a kid, but he didn’t actually start ruling until around 30.

John the baptizer…

You get the idea.

So hey: maybe some of my best days are ahead of me.

That’s the advice I got last week.

As a ‘turning 30’ birthday gift, Steph very thoughtfully arranged for me to have lunch with someone well on the other side of 30 who I respect quite a bit, and I asked him:

“If you could go back and talk to yourself on your 30th birthday, what would you say?”

He said he would tell himself 3 things:

1 – Your best years are around the corner. The fourth decade is significantly better than any of the previous 3.

2 – Don’t waste the present worrying about the future. To the extent that it’s possible: Do your best to be fully present now.

3 – Don’t forget that you’re going to give an account to God for what He has entrusted to you.

 

So that’s encouraging as I look into the future.

I’m putting all this into a half-brained blog post because I want to hear what you think:

Whether you are 21 or 71 – what would be your advice to yourself going into your 30th birthday?

Leave a comment and let’s learn from each other!

3 comments

  1. First, happy early birthday. I’m now sliding down the back side of the 30s (I’ll be 37 in October) and I think what I’d tell myself is “Hold on, you will never believe what God is going to do in your life!” And had I known what would transpire this decade I might have run screaming away and missed the amazingness of our Father. There have been hard moments, but they’ve pulled me closer to God. The 30s were WAY better than my 20s (I was an idiot in my 20s). I’ve matured in ways I didn’t even know possible. I’ve had to struggle with mortality, struggle with strongholds, struggle with my stupid flesh and sin.

    But in all of it God has proven faithful. I’m more firmly rooted in Him than I ever have been before. Things I could only believe for other people I can now believe for me. I have gathered rocks of rememberance from the path we’ve been on that testify to His grace, mercy, protection, love, strength, discipline, and goodness. He’s even helped me look back at the journeys before my 30s and given me rocks of rememberance there of His faithfulness, even in suffering, when I wondered if God heard my cries. He did and He sustained me, even if I didn’t know it was Him.

    My 30s have been a time of joy as I watch my son get older, hear him make a profession of faith, and baptize him as we rejoiced with our brothers and sisters in Christ. I’ve done life for more than a decade now with my best friend and her family, watched her kids get married off, and start having their own babies. I’ve gotten to be a big sister in the faith to some little sisters and learned the secret that I get discipled as much as they do as we live life together and point each other to Jesus.

    Tomorrow my son turns four. I’m thankful for that little guy – God has used him to sanctify me in ways that are some kind of awesome (and some kind of painful at times). I’m thankful to have such clear pictures of God’s faithfulness. I’m thankful that when I’m sliding down the back side of 40, God will still be there and I’ll have so much more to rejoice in Him for!

    Sorry so long – but that’s my perspective for you! May God rock your socks off as you hit this new decade! May you grow like crazy in Him and may His love pour through you to your family!

  2. And I meant on the 4th my son turns 8! Good gracious, more coffee before reflecting on a blog…

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