(J. R. Miller, "The Beauty of Every Day" 1910)
Some people come to birthdays regretfully. They do not like to think that they are growing older. But there is no reason for regret, if only we are living our years as we should live them, as we may live them.
Empty years—are a dishonor. Years filled with sin—are blots in the calendar. We should be ashamed to come to a birthday at the close of a year of idleness, indolence, neglect, or unfaithfulness. Jesus said we must give account for every idle word we speak. It will be an unhappy reckoning that we must make, after an idle year, or for idle hours and days in a year.
But there need never be a shadow of regret in coming to a birthday, when we have lived our best through all the days. If we go through a year walking with God—we shall come to its close with enlarged life, with nobler character, with richer virtues—in every way a more godly man or woman.
Growth is a law of life. When growth ceases, death is beginning. God counts our age, not by our birthdays—but by the advances which His eye sees in our inner life. Growth, too, is not marked by height or weight or by accumulations of money or property or earthly honor—but by an increase in godly character.
"I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." 2 Timothy 4:7