05 Nov

Older Is Bolder And Colder

4th November 2019

As I clock thirty three today, my experience tells me that I have the next one year to figure out what being thirty-three looks like and learn how to be thirty-three. That’s ridiculous, because when I finally figure it out, thirty-three is gone! And it’s not transferable- no-one else’s thirty-three is my thirty-three. The variables are so different!

That’s the thing with life. You’re so steeped in the intensity of running a race that you’re progressively learning about. You’ll either find that you’re always playing an impossible catch-up or you’re, through the help of a loving God, embracing the beauty of this set-up and taking it all in good stride.

Getting older is definitely making me bolder. Every one of us, actually. 

And it’s a principle with pretty much all of life: Older is bolder.  

The first attempt at anything comes with the most nerves and resistance and shaky feet.  But the longer you stay at it, you kind of catch on a familiarity that gives you a boldness at it.

I watched each of my children take their first walking steps. These days, as I see them running with abandon and attempting every jump and adventure, I realize the older you are at anything, the bolder you get.

Can you remember some day you had to have a cold bath in the freezing cold weather? The most difficult part was the first splash of cold water. Can you remember how you began running a countdown on yourself before hitting that first splash?

One, two, three, go…!

But the longer you stayed in hitting the cold water on, the more you warmed up to it.  Older is bolder.

Your first day at the new school came with a lot of nerves and uncertainties. But older became bolder. Or the first day on the new job. You were literally bowing to greet all your subordinates because you didn’t want to get anything wrong, but now, you probably don’t even bow to greet your boss. Older is bolder!

The first trial of alcohol came with a lot of braving up. Then it became your casual. 

The first time you watched porn, you were sweating like you were in the middle of hell and afraid that you had committed the ‘unforgivable sin’. But somehow, older became bolder. 

Your first date came with you practicing your lines and gestures. But now, older is bolder.  I remember my first kiss on my wedding day… trust me, older is bolder! 

We could go on and on- First sex experience, first time you tried drugs, first time you stood to address an audience, first time you did permutations for an exam, first time you drove a car, first time you lifted your hands in a worship moment, first time we had an irresponsible leader as a nation, first time you lied in that relationship, first time you prayed for someone to be healed or to receive the Holy Spirit, first visit to your prospective in-laws…  

With everything, we seem to shed off the early nerves and get bolder.

But also colder.

If you think about it, for everything I’m getting bolder at, I’m getting colder to the opposite end.

It’s almost as though every one of us, all through life, stands at a midpoint of bolder and colder, and with every choice we make, we’re inclining towards one end and away from the other end.

If I’m getting bolder at addressing that large crowd, then I’m getting colder towards my tormenting fear of the crowd. It’s becoming stranger and stranger to me. 

Whenever you get bolder towards the right, you’re getting colder towards the wrong.

When I look over my thirty-three year journey, for every list I generate of things that older has gotten me bolder at, there’s a concurrent list of what older has gotten me colder towards.

I take thought to remember all the fears and questions that accompanied me at some of the major decision points in my life. But the longer I have walked towards obeying God, the bolder I’ve gotten. I remember all those questions of ‘who am I to think I can mentor anyone else?’ or fears of how I would be the husband and father that God would want me to, or how I could lead a church…

I say it in the most unassuming way, but I’m colder towards fears of failure that were once all over me, and towards the lies of the devil and all those distracting voices, because I’ve gotten older and bolder at obeying God, and standing up to his calling and following his lead. I’m colder towards hurt and unforgiveness, because of everyday I’ve given myself to walk in love.  I’m older in leading and I’m bolder about it. I’m bolder about my marriage and my responsibilities.

As I ‘bolden’ my faith, I ‘colden’ my fears.

As I ‘bolden’ my steps to follow Jesus, I ‘colden’ the way towards satan and that life.

For every time I take one more decision towards loving my wife and children, then I get bolder at that, and I’m getting colder towards being an irresponsible husband and father.

Older is bolder and colder.

If I’m getting bolder at my faith, then I’m getting colder towards my fears.

If I’m getting bolder at a life of sin, the truth is I’m getting colder towards God.

Older is bolder and colder.

As surely as the clock ticks, there’s always older happening to me- and there’s always also a bolder and colder happening in me.

You’re always gaining a direction. And losing a direction.

I’m learning that my wisdom is to choose my bolder. And by implication, choose my colder.

Even if I have to do it mechanically for a start, time will eventually make it clear. The bolder and colder will set in.

I don’t want to have a cold heart towards God. I don’t want to have a cold heart towards my family and the precious relationships in my life. I don’t want to be cold towards my calling. I don’t want to be cold towards leading and loving and living.

But the question would be whether I’m picking the bolds right.

Every day I don’t fellowship with God, I’m getting bolder at being away from God; every day I hold off forgiving a loved one, I’m getting bolder at bitterness and broken relationships; every day I allow distractions and sit in it, I’m getting bolder at a life without purpose.

Sadly, that means I’m also getting colder towards God, and colder towards relationships full of life and love and the purpose of God for my life.

Pick your bolder, and even if it’s mechanically, do it! 

People tell me they want to have it great with God and be free from a life of sin and struggle, and I’m always trying to explain it’s as simple as picking the basics and getting older and bolder at them; and the colders will set in.

Get older at doing the basic right things: at reading your bible even when it doesn’t make sense, at showing up in church every time you should, at lifting your hands in worship even when the emotions aren’t all there, at praying even when you’re not sure you’re being heard, at tithing and giving even when it seems there’s no reward…

A bolder is setting in!  

And a colder.

You’re becoming a bolder child of God, full of faith, a genuine all-season worshipper, loving and generous… And you’re becoming colder and colder towards that back-and-forth faith life and stone heartedness and all that.

What bolder is coming with your older?

I renew my commitment to pick my bolder to be my faith and my God journey; to love and honour the precious relationships in my life; to live full and give everyday everything; to serve the purpose of God with all my heart; to live a life of excellence that honours God.

And then, I’m colder and colder towards my fears and doubts, I’m colder and colder towards distractions and laziness and mediocrity. I’m colder and colder towards the slightest thoughts of quitting.

So then, in as much as thirty three is uncharted ground for me and it will be gone before I grip it, I want to make sure that even when it’s gone, it leaves me with a boldness in the right directions. That boldness will not only move in to thirty-four- it will never leave and is the framework of this emerging story.

Older will always be bolder, and colder.

You’re always gaining a direction. And losing a direction.

What bolder is coming with your older in this season of your life?

Much Love,

Tolulope

    Comments

  1. Oluwabamise
    November 5, 2019

    I’m getting bolder towards my God journey! Thank you so much for this Sir

    Reply
  2. November 6, 2019

    This is a very important message for everyone. It is so profound and practical! Indeed, when we choose our ‘bolder’ we are by implication, choosing our ‘colder’. I am leaving this great post with this question pressing me: “What bolder is coming with your older?” I stand with you in your renewed commitment to commitment to “pick my bolder to be my faith and my God journey; to love and honour the precious relationships in my life; to live full and give everyday everything; to serve the purpose of God with all my heart; to live a life of excellence that honours God.”

    Reply
  3. Tolulope
    January 2, 2020

    In all we do, we are choosing a direction. Thank you for this sir.

    Reply

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