God must have been having a good day! #HappyBirthday

This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. – 1 John 1:5-6

1-IMG_E0427Today is Rebekah’s birthday. The first time I wished her a happy birthday she turned twenty-one. This will be the forty-second celebration I have enjoyed marking the beautiful creative moment God embraced in gifting her to this world. God must have been having a good day – pitch perfect – and the gift never gets old.

Twelve years ago Rebekah celebrated her birthday by coming home with Scout Labradoodle. I found out about this when the phone rang: “You’ll never guess what I’ve got in the car!” she said. Then all I could hear was this top volume yelping/yowling/barking/crying. I guessed.

Since then it’s been a birthday tradition to do the famous Rebekah-Scoutie photo shoot. Today it was all we could do to get Scout to the front stoop.

Life in abundance:

I really can’t believe Rebekah is in her 60’s. She is still the most vital, animated, authentic, engaging, light-filled, alive person I have ever known. There is something about the Christ-life in her that beautifully illustrates the fact that we are absolutely “new creations” because of Jesus.

Necks may need surgery, backs may fail, chronic diseases may take their toll, decades of carrying other people’s burdens may leave their mark… but there is a natural vitality and luminescence about an active, engaged, authentic spiritual life that belies the progression of years calculated by the journey of the earth around the sun.

there is a natural vitality and luminescence about an active, engaged, authentic spiritual life that belies the progression of years

writer Derek Maul

You see, we orbit another light that is purer and stronger, one that renews and animates – Jesus, the source of all life and energy. The more of God’s life we take in, the less chronological age has to say about our mortality.

So, “Happiest of birthdays, Rebekah. May you continue to live as a beacon of light and hope and peace and promise.”

Grateful, and loved – DEREK

(the photo-shoot)



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Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.

Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.

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