Monday, October 31, 2011

Celebrating my jubilee year...

So, I'm turning 50 this month...November 21st to be exact.

I'm embracing it.

really! I am totally embracing this, my 50th year on this planet.

To celebrate, I plan on doing
50 random, yet intentional, things for others between now and my birthday. (I originally wanted to do 50 things on my 50th birthday, but logistics and travel plans got the best of me!) So, for the next three weeks, I'm keeping track, being intentional in acts of kindness.

I've been inspired by the concept of "
jubilee." In the Old Testament, every 50th year was consecrated as a "jubilee year." The 50th year was one of liberty, remission, respite - of returning things (in those days, land) to the original owners. (Leviticus 25)

I want to celebrate my liberty and abundant blessings by returning them to my Rightful Owner -- by passing on the gift and blessing others. I want to claim the promise God made to Abraham - "I will bless you...and you will
be a blessing." (Genesis 12:2)

So, I'm launching into this jubilee with some ideas for little ways I can
be a gift - to those I love and those I just happen upon...

Here are a few already in the works:

-- I ordered a pair of super-cute Toms for my daughter and daughter-in-law...I figure this counts as
four things, because the two girls are getting gifts and two little children in need of shoes are also getting some! (Full disclosure: I actually ordered a pair for me, too. Hey, it is my birthday month!)

-- Sending a gift to another young friend who just returned from Afghanistan. No, really, thank

-- Ordering flowers for my mom to be delivered on my birthday. (This is already a tradition of ours - inspired by Wayne Watson.) This year, for my
50th, I figure I'll send my dad something too. Probably something along the lines of a Sonic gift card, because that's how HE rolls!

-- Donating a book to our church library. (A copy of 1000 Gifts - which we're currently studying!) This book also has inspired me to count gifts...and to become a gift:

"Spend the whole of your one wild and beautiful life investing in many lives and God will simply not be outdone. God extravagantly pays back everything we give away and exactly in the currency that is not of this world but the one we yearn for: Joy in Him." -- Ann Voskamp

-- I have plans to write a few heartfelt notes to some random wonderful folks who have impacted my life in ways small and large...

-- We'll be taking a college student to supper this week (Hi, Norm!)

-- And supporting a couple of young missionaries planning international trips.

There are more plans in the works - plans involving cookies, homemade bread, flowers, meals, smiles and children and goodness!

You're invited to this jubilee - a month-long celebration of love, joy, faithfulness, blessing and hope for the future...(you don't have to wait until you're 50 to join!)


Nona said...

What a great idea! So lovely of you to want to celebrate your jubilee birthday by giving to others. I'm sure your life is richly blessed, just by your gift of giving to others. I loved your writing and look forward to hearing more.

Grace said...

I turned 48 last week. I never minded getting older. Life is just too wonderful....with the Lord! Happy early birthday!

dsblanchard said...

Dear Leslie,

You say your church is studying 1000 Gifts. How are you doing it? We want to begin to use it as a Sunday School study and were wondering if anyone has developed a study guide or some such "thing". We're not ones to reinvent the wheel if we don't have to.

Thanks for any help you can give,

Leslie Young said...

Hey Dawn! I don't know how to contact you directly, but what we're doing is reading a chapter a week then discussing it.

We're using a "free reader's guide" downloaded from the Zondervan site -
(just go to 'free reader's guide' and click and it downloads it as a pdf file. We're using it kind of loosely.

We're also watching the videos from the (in)courage site's bloom book study. (Found here: These are around 10-12 minutes, very informal, just Ann talking about each chapter with Angie Smith and Jessica Turner.

Hope that helps! We're really enjoying our study!

dsblanchard said...

Dear Leslie,

Thanks for the information. I am forwarding it to the person in charge of our Sunday School class. I think this will be a great help.

I subscribed to the comment feed of your blog so I would get any answer you might give.

Thanks so much for your kind response,

Leslie Young said...

Ah, Dawn - so you're smarter than me! ;-)
Hope the info helps - we love the book and it's fun journeying through it with some folks! Have a great day!!!

Amna Ijaz Mehmood said...

I wonder what I'd be doing when I turn fifty. I'd help people if I do become the greatest scientist of the century and get the noble prize. Oh yes I will. >_<
Happpyyy fiftieth. May you have as MANY as you want..not more. :P

Hannah Crain said...

love hearing about your jubilee plans! :) happy jubilee year! :)