Happy Birthday to me.

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Today is my birthday. You may or may not know that. If you would like to put it in your calendar for next year, that would be great. I enjoy Home Depot and restaurants. 

To start my birthday, I went for a 3.5 mile run. A favorite place to run is right outside our front door and down the street behind the school and methodist church. The little hilly, forested area is affectionately called 'the sanctuary.' More often than not, I am all alone on the trails up and down the hills. I have literally pounded the same dirt thousands of times and logged thousands of miles memorizing every turn, rock, and jutting root which can trip me up every time I pass. Many of those steps are taken on Sunday mornings prior to preaching at CRBC. Many prayers have been prayed, tears have been cried, joys have been experienced, plans have been made, and hoping wishes will come true.

As I was trudging up a hill, panting 'as a deer pants for the water,' the most glorious, marvelous, and ethereal thought rushed through my head at light speed that lasted for about 1.5 seconds. The.Gift.of.Life. The fact that I was alive instead of not. The ability to breath oxygen in and carbon dioxide out. A heart that beats relative to how much energy I exert. Muscles that contract and relax so quickly my legs and arms move in ballet like synchronicity moving my body along without even thinking. A mind able to think, create, solve, and dream ideas and thoughts about yesterday, today, and tomorrow. A gratitude beyond words. A recognition that a divinity loomed larger over me than can be comprehended. A sense of my mortality in the midst of love and grace. All in 1.5 seconds. 

As I floated home in glorious beauty, I couldn't get my Bible open fast enough to read Psalm 139.  Enjoy it for yourselves:

1 O LORD , you have searched me and you know me. 2 You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. 3 You discern my going out and my lying down; 
you are familiar with all my ways. 4 Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD . 

5 You hem me in-behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. 

7 Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? 8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10 even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. 

11 If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me," 12 even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. 

13 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. 15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, 16your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. 

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.