Birthdays – A Celebration of Life and Service -Part 2-

Those who choose to mark the day they were born may make it one of celebration of life and of service. One may decide to spend it with friends and family, with orphans at an orphanage, with the differently-bled (handicapped) persons, in service to a neighbour, relative or friend, visiting the sick in hospital or the imprisoned, organizing a free service activity for needy persons, or organizing a fundraiser for someone in need.

You do not have to celebrate your birthday like so and so. Celebration could be done in a personal way, or with friends and relatives or in any form that you choose. The important thing is to make the day special to you and possibly mark it with some form of service to your neighbour.

I know of someone whose birthday it was on a certain date. However, she found herself not having much time for herself because a relative had suddenly given birth and needed the celebrant’s assistance to welcome the new baby. So, for the day’s celebrant, she spent her entire day between the market and the kitchen in order to support the new mother. For her, her birthday was celebrated as a form of service to her neighbour. She had the option of walking away and disappearing to have an outing with friends, but she did not. She stayed put and helped out with a smile on her face.

For some believers, a birthday is a day of reflection, prayers of thanksgiving and self-introspection. Above all else, the overall attitude on one’s birthday needs to be that of appreciation, thanksgiving and gratitude. As the Holy Bible says: It is the living who can give thanks to God.

Apart from how one chooses to mark their date of birth, one wonders if a person necessarily has a connection with other persons born on the same month. This may or may not necessarily be the case. Your life-time best friend or your closest buddy may or may not be born same month with you. In the case of a twin, there is a physical and spiritual connection for sure. Also, some researchers have come up with common traits for people born in certain months, though not everyone believe such groupings and classification.

Sometimes, as we celebrate our birthdays annually, we forget to celebrate, or at least remember the woman who had to go through labour, inexplicable pain, and several other inconveniences to ensure that we survived the ordeal and be born on the said date. Your mother made a conscious choice to be at God’s service in bringing you to the world. A prayer and a thought of goodwill towards her on that day will be good and certainly not out of place.

All in all, taking time to mark your birthday is important. It comes only once a year. You can afford to give yourself some of the pleasure of getting much attention on your birthday, even if this does not happen every year. This is because you are special! You are important! You are unique! You have a purpose to fulfill in life and that is why you have been given the precious gift of life.

Do not let your birthday pass like any other day any more. In the least, do something significant to you or for yourself (for example, special prayers and/or service to a neighbor); do something that gladdens your heart and makes you happy and peaceful.

We do not wait to die before we celebrate ourselves or others.
Life is a gift worth celebrating. Why?  Because it is all you’ve got!

So do have a good time celebrating your birthday, and adding a twist of service to it!

  • Linda Ellah

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