How did you celebrate your birthday when you were a child? As my regular readers know, my father left my mother for other “women” (yes, more than one). My mom didn’t have an education, didn’t drive a car and didn’t have a real job. And when my father left, he never supported us kids. Mom was left with a bunch of kids – period.
As a grown up, I try to put myself in my mom’s shoes back then. I ask myself, how would I have handled a situation like mom had? Mom had a don’t quit attitude and spirit and we knew, no matter what, mom loved us very much.
Mom learned how to drive right away and God put people in her path to help her with food and housing for all of us. She rented an old farm house in the country for $50 a month. There was no running water and an out house, ( think of a Porta Poddy made out of wood).
Eventually, mom got a good paying job and things improved. We stayed living in that farm house for ten years. Mom had turned that farm house in to a warm and loving home. We did not have a lot, but we were not poor.
Every year mom would set aside a day for each of us on our birthday. She would make our birthday a special day with her. My older brother would watch the rest of us while mom would take us shopping on our birthday. She would take us out to lunch with her and we would get to choose the dinner on our birthday. Every one had to eat for dinner what we picked for the evening meal on our birthday.
I don’t remember all the meals we picked but I remember one of my brothers would pick ” basghetti ” – spaghetti. I chose the Haddock fish fry every year. Mom made each of us feel special on our birthday. I carried that birthday celebration and choice for dinner over to my son.
Birthdays are a celebration of one’s birth. So when I got saved, I thought if we celebrate one’s physical birth into this world, why not celebrate one’s spiritual birthday into the kingdom of God? So with my son, the same type of celebration we would have for his physical birthday, we would have for spiritual birthdays.
I don’t remember the day I was physically born into this world. But I do remember the day I was born again into the kingdom of God. A few months before I got saved I had just finished reading the New Testament. I was working in the music industry. This guy and his wife came into the music store to buy an organ for their church.
He invited me to their church services they were holding in their home. I visited. Partly because they bought and organ from me and also because I was curious how a church meets in someone’s house. He opened his King James Bible and started preaching on hell. I later asked my partner in business what he would think if I became a “born again Christian”? He told me, ‘You have to do what you think is right’.
That night I told God, okay, I will give you 30 days. If you can get through to me in 30 days, okay. If not, say la vee. So I went to that pastor’s church, in their home, for 30 days. I wrote everything down he said and went home and looked everything up in my Bible (also a King James).
I was shocked to read God would cast people in to the lake of fire, which at that time, I thought that was hell. Revelation 20:12-15 KJV “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.”
After 30 days were up I knew I had to make a decision about Jesus, about God. So it was a Wednesday night Bible study. After Bible study, the pastor’s wife would have coffee and kuchen. I waited for everyone to leave and then I asked a couple of questions. So the pastor and I sat down at the dining room table while his wife was praying in the kitchen.
After he answered my questions he looked at me and asked me if I wanted to get saved. I told him yes, but I don’t know how. He explained it is not the prayer, the words, but it is meaning what you pray in the prayer from your heart. It was a heart change towards God. And it was surrendering my life to the Lord. Everything. I said yes, I want to. So he led me in prayer, 34 years ago today. It was 10:52 pm at the dining room table.
My spiritual birthday is easy to remember. My son would tease me and say it’s a rodent’s day, Ground Hog Day. I have never been into things like that but it gave my son a chuckle.
I knew my name was written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life that day. But I didn’t know or understand much about Jesus, God or his word much less the Holy Spirit. All I knew was I did not want to go to hell. I didn’t love God, didn’t love Jesus, I just did not want to go to hell.
The heavens did not open and all these incredible things happen, but I did have a peace in my spirit, in my heart that I could not explain. It was like a burden had been lifted off me. I determined I needed to know more about this guy Jesus and God because he just saved me. That’s when I bought a 5-subject notebook and started in Genesis. I read through the whole Bible, geneologies included, and wrote down everything God taught me. That is when I fell in love with Jesus, with God and learned about the Holy Spirit.
And when I was going through all the geneologies I found a gem. My father’s last name was right there in the book of Chronicles. That answered some questions I had and inspired me to do a family geneology. I understood why my so called grand mother (who was never a grand mother to any of us kids) hated my father. My grand mother was a Nazi lover. My suspicions were, my father was Jewish, born in Germany. We would say, he was a German Jew.
One of my brother’s daughter’s wanted to do the geneology DNA companies offer today. About a year ago or so, she got back the results from my brother’s DNA. It came back Jewish and German. God had given me the answers I sought.
I don’t celebrate Jesus’ birthday because scripture tells us to celebrate his death, burial and resurrection. I do not object to people celebrating his birthday but Christmas is not the birth of Jesus and students of the word of God know this. I do not condemn people who do celebrate Christmas. But I think one’s Spiritual Birthday is far more important and if you celebrate your earthly birthday, why not celebrate your spiritual birth as well.
Until next time.