Walking Our Faith: What changes as we age and what doesn’t

Be kind to one another, compassionate, and mutually forgiving, just as God has forgiven you in Christ. Be imitators of God as his dear children. Follow the way of love, even as Christ loved you. He gave himself for us as an offering to God, a gift of pleasing fragrance. (Ephesians 4:32-5:2)

If you told me a year ago, I would be moving from Breckenridge three months from now, I would have been terribly sad.

If you told me 10 years ago, I would move to Breckenridge and spend the next seven years writing a weekly faith column for the Summit Daily News I would have been thrilled both for the chance to live in the mountains and to see my name in print every Saturday.

If you told me 30 years ago when I worked on the 98th floor of Two World Trade Center and purchased my corporate uniform at Neiman Marcus, that today I would sew and knit my own clothes and own 5 pairs of Birkenstocks, I would’ve laughed and told you, you were crazy.

As you can see, I am terrible at predicting the future.

And when I look back at the person, I was a year ago, 10 years ago or 30 years ago, there are things about that person I love and just as many things that honestly make me cringe with embarrassment. Selfish things I said or did.

And that’s saying something because at each of those stages of life I considered myself a good Christian and someone who loved God dearly.

If looking back at the person I used to be is a source of pain, I also understand I could not be the person I am today without first having been the person I was then. Which is to say that with God’s grace and wisdom I believe we can get better with age if we make that our intention.

Tomorrow is Easter Sunday. Tonight, I will be one of the readers at the Easter Vigil Mass at St. Mary’s. It is my favorite church service of the entire year as it winds through a series of biblical readings to retell the story of God’s relationship with man from creation through Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection.

It is an emotionally moving church service and the most important of our liturgical year because without the death and resurrection of Christ there would be no Christianity, no salvation or hope for the future. It is the foundation beneath our feet.

The last six months have been a time of momentous change for me, accompanying my mother through hospice and her passing. At the same time the apartment I rent has been put up for sale, and as a result, this summer I hope to move to Clark, outside of Steamboat Springs.

If you told me I would be making my way through these life-changing events over the course of a few months I might have cried. And certainly, in the six weeks since losing my mother I’ve cried many times.

But here’s the other side of the coin. This will be my 60th Easter celebration and the truth remains the same, Christ triumphs over darkness, life over death, love over fear. And as much as I have changed, God’s love for me has never wavered. And that’s the message of Easter — for each of us.

Yes, the uncertainty of so many moving parts makes me anxious. But every step of the way I will ask God for wisdom and count on his guidance when I am fearful about the future. And of course, I will continue to share my journey in this weekly column until I finally move from Summit County.

This column follows my walk of faith because I believe all too often we are told how to live our faith but never what that looks like in real life. My hope is that by sharing my journey you will become interested in your own walk of faith. And as you do, discover God’s nearness.

If you get a chance, find an Easter Vigil service in Summit County tonight or attend one of the many Easter morning services that will be held tomorrow. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t been to church in a year or a decade. Just slip in the back pew and experience God’s love for you, just as you are today.

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Joshua 1:9)

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