The Best Days of Your Life are RIGHT NOW!


The "Teenage Look" filter on Tik Tok and other social media sites is baffling me.

Before I tell you why, please know up front that this post has very little to do with a Joel Osteen-Your Best Life Now philosophy. Its much closer to The Office's Andy Bernard when he says, "I wish there was a way to know you're in the good old days before you've actually left them."

Okay, back to my original statement. The "Teenage Look" filter and primarily watching people's reaction to it, has thrown me. I mean, I get it, but I also don't. More often than not, I find video clips of middle-aged men and women trying the "Teenage Look" filter and bawling their eyes out.

If you don't know what this is, its a filter that uses your camera phone and makes your face look younger, more like when you were a teenager. So, in a sense, you are looking into a mirror and seeing your teenage face again. Honestly, it didn't really work on me. I used the filter and it made me look like a clean cut, 8-year-old chorus boy, that just got through having his face powdered. No acne, messy hair, or teenage boy peach fuzz. It wasn't me.

Nonetheless, it apparently works for many other folks and a lot of them are having an interesting time seeing themselves as a teen again. Tears flow down their faces. Phrases like, "Hang in there" "You'll make it" "If I could only tell you what I know now" and "Stay there" have frequently been uttered by such users.

Now, I realize I lost some of you, because your convinced these apps use your camera phone to view your face and send retinal scans to the Russians. If that's you, you're excused now. Go find a nice subreddit echo chamber to scream conspiracies into. Stay away from submitting angry or know-it-all comments on people's Facebooks. You and they will most definitely be happier for it. Well, at least maybe they will be happier.

ANY WHOOO....for the rest of you......

I know I shouldn't laugh, but I do find myself chuckling a bit at these videos of people crying over seeing their teenage face. I seriously do understand that some folks went through tough, trying, and traumatic times at that age. Some have spent their adult years trying to heal and deal with such hurts and anger. I'm not making light of that. 

I'm just a little stunned. I find it humorous that a goofy face filter is invoking such a reaction. At the same time, I'm a little saddened that so many people see that teenage face as a lost and treasured time that they can never get back. Its almost as if its a reminder of the disappointment that the "best days of their lives" is over. Sure, there are things to miss about being a teenager. I had some amazing times and experiences as a teenager. However, I don't consider the best days of my life to be my teenage years. And truthfully, I don't think God intended for that to be the case either.

Again, I get it. This isn't the reason behind everyone getting teary-eyed at the thought of their teenage self. I am specifically addressing the thought out there that being a kid and teenager is the best time of your life. This isn't just seen in reactions to social media filters. I've been told this my whole life, by people I love and respect. As a kid, I was told to that I was living my best life now, as if I should never want to grow up and be an adult. We have a whole generation that views "adulting" with disdain. I believe this thought is prevalent because of an untruthful thought that has been re-enforced to us all since day one about the best days of our lives.

I'm gonna be one of the ones saying the opposite. I say the best days of your life are right now! Or, at least they can be. Obviously, crises, hardships, and loss come at any age. Just because today has been grand for me, doesn't mean its been grand for you. But, scripture is clear about a few things when it comes to age and happiness.

1. Followers of Christ Can Rejoice at Any Time, Good times or Bad

 Read Paul's writings in Philippians 4 or Habukkuk's book in chapter 3. Happiness isn't contingent upon circumstance or age.

2. God Uses Age

"Is not wisdom found among the aged? Does not long life bring understanding?" Job 12:12

 “Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.” Proverbs 16:31

3. We are Being Renewed in Christ Constantly

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day." 2 Corinthians 4:16 

4. Wishing You Were in the Old Days is Not Wise or Good for You
"Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?” For it is not wise to ask such questions." Ecclesiastes 7:10

I can honestly say that I have found joy in every single age. I've been through my share of trials and trauma, but the best days of my life have always been the ones I'm currently living in. But, at the same time, I also know that my true best days lie ahead in eternity with Christ. In this life though, I am joyful to be a 44-year-old man. I don't wish to go back to being 10, 16, 18, 21, or 29. Truthfully, there are some amazing memories of all those ages. I loved many things about my childhood, with the exception of middle school (just kidding, but seriously). I loved my high school and college days. I loved my seminary days and being a young married couple with my wife. I enjoyed my first few years of being a youth pastor and not having kids. I loved being a new parent and having little babies. I love being a parent now of older children in their teens. Each age and time has been a treasure, and I believe God has purpose and intention behind each age and time I live in.

But, that's the KEY! We must see our age and time as the age and time that God intends for us to live in every single day. If we get on board with what God wants to do with us and through us in each day, we can rest assured that we are living out the best days of our lives every single day.

I look forward to growing older just as much as I like to be nostalgic and conjure up memories about my younger days. Both thoughts can be nice, but I am thankful for where God has me right now.

I think Andy Bernard was a lot closer to biblical truth than that other guy I mentioned earlier. "I wish there was a way to know you're in the good old days before you've actually left them."

I believe if you know Christ and understand that God has intention to use you and work in you every single day, then I believe you will understand that you are in the good old days.

If you don't know Jesus. He's the answer and person you need to turn to....immediately.

If you know Jesus, be reminded of what you have in Him. Seek His Kingdom first. Don't be anxious. Rejoice always.

Post a Comment