Reflections in a Shadow
I glance in the mirror. Simple, yet somehow not simple. Who is this?
I am not the child I once was, yet I can still see him there- cheerful, happy-go-lucky and as stable as a bowl of jello.
But wait, I pause to truly see the me I am today; lines and crevices mar the unspoiled face of childhood, mirroring the many paths I could have chosen.
I am not sixteen, I am not twenty and I am no longer thirty-five. Time has marched across my features and I can scarcely remember the Never Neverland of childish imaginings.
Yet, as I continue to gaze in the reflection, I see the features of family older and wiser in the shape and contour of my face.
They too are treading an unknown path. Some remain while others reside in my memory only.
One day, those gathered in my mind will be the stuff of legend with a bit of fable thrown in. Family stories will be passed along to those who never knew the flesh and blood reality.
Given enough time, most will be forgotten.
This chance encounter with the me in the mirror brings about haunting memories and a midlife crisis of sorts. And I find myself needing to make a choice.
I can attempt to create the me I recall in faulty memory or I can attempt to honor the memory of those I have known by being more like them.
Yet, neither choice seems entirely agreeable.
Perhaps there is another choice.
The good old days are often the best of memories, sifted often and embellished with time. There is a lot that was deliberately forgotten.
The future holds much promise, dreams, adventure and lessons of life.
My life is neither at the beginning and it not is it at the end. This simply is a point chosen for reflection.
God delights in the heart of a child, so I choose that heart. God delights in maturity, so I choose that path.
Abraham became a parent at 100.
God gave Moses his greatest assignment at the age of 80.
Paul and John wrote books late in life, that are still changing lives almost 2000 years later.
Through aches and pains, trouble and trial and disappointment and heartache, God used these men to change the world.
So I will not cower at the thought of the coming years.
Rather than looking back at the way things were, I want to look ahead to the way things could be.
I want the heart of a child and the maturity of a wise man. I want to greet each day with a willingness to pursue this adventure called life.
I won't do it by acting like someone half my age or twice my age. I will do it as me, with the help of an ageless God who loves us and understands that we are but dust.
I will associate with younger people. I want to know what they think and how they see their world. And I want their energy.
I will surround myself with older people. I will need all the wisdom they can offer.
I will not contribute one dime to the widening of the generation gap. If I can, I will build a bridge.
The me in the mirror is not what I once was or who I once was.
The me in the mirror is not the final word on what and who I will become.
The me in the mirror is simply a reflection of a shadow as I continue following the prompting of the Lord.
I fall down, I get up, I fall down and I get up; but I will not stop. I will continue on; I want to see what is at the end of the road.
I walk away from the mirror with a new determination. I have things to do...
Glenn A. Hascall [Paraphrased and a Partial Rewrite]
I found the original ballad on the Internet a while back-
I lost the Web address.
Have a great day...