40? I don’t feel 40.

Are you a birthday person? I know you have a birthday.  I am wondering of you like celebrating your birthday?  I think the older you get the less enthusiastic you become about your birthday.  That’s how I was feeling when I walked into Starbucks this morning to use my Starbucks Gold Card birthday coupon and get my free cup of birthday coffee. The barista behind the counter wished me a surprisingly enthusiastic “Happy Birthday” and asked me how old I was.  I triumphantly told her, “I am 40.” She responded by saying, in a rather taunting tone, “Wow, 40… You’re half way there.” I smiled and nodded, but I was not amused.  However, that did get me thinking. Half way to where?  Am I going to Disney World? And, If I am “half way there”, what have I learned at the half way point?

So, today’s post is about the few (and I mean few) things I have learned in my last 40 years.

  • Cocoa Pebbles make the best cereal milk.
  • Now I know why my dad read in the bathroom.
  • Boxers.
  • Snow is a four letter word.
  • Watching peolpe run is not the same thing as running.
  • Life is like a roll of toilet paper, the closer you get to the end the faster it goes.
  • Your children, not your profession, are your legacy.
  • Love is a verb.
  • I Love my wife, Rachel, more than I did when we got married.
  • Knowing why I am here, on this earth, has made all the difference! Matthew 22:34-40

Whether you are 40 are not, tell me one or two things you have learned to this point in your life? The best answer will win a Starbucks “Mug Award” (lapel pin).

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot.  I know what I really want for my birthday.  I would love for you to become a subscriber to the Ordained Barista Blog! Just click the RSS link in the coffee mug at the top of the page or enter your email address in the side bar! I am trying to get to 500 subscribers, so please spread the word.


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  • http://www.notamegachurch.com Tom Pounder

    Good reflection Barry. One of the many things I have learned is that the more you try to control, the less control you have.

  • Kimberly Cundiff-Jefferson

    I enjoyed the 40th birthday reflection. Mine is coming in August, ever since I turned 39 I have pondered what I know and what I don’t know, also what will I ever know. The one thing I always know to be true in any situation is what my Mom always said, “God works in funny ways.” I know it doesn’t say it that way in the bible but it is so true. Along with God works in funny ways, I know he always gives us everything we need, even when we feel like we don’t have everything. So as I always say I don’t know much but I do know that much to be true.

  • Tony Babcock

    Turning 40 was huge for me as well and since i know not the day or hour i am going to go home to be with my father …. i could have hit the half way point a 15 years ago??!!! or maybe i have yet to hit it ??? great points my wise friend … here are a few of mine.

    * better to be thought a fool then to open my mouth and remove all doubt

    *light travels faster then sound this is why some people seem bright until they speak

    *boxer briefs

    * Hazelnut coffee lots of cream and real sugar

    * I Like Isaiah 45 It is a lot like my life … god was looking out for me long before i knew him. For i should have been dead long ago. and now I plan on doing all i can to serve him now.

    * The closer i draw to god the more i realise i have to change of myself … lol

    * A 3 stranded rope is harder to break!! my god my wife and me …. she is such a blessing to me.

    * i learned that doing something nice for someone else and not being found out about it is hard !!! I want to feed my ego and tell on myself

    * never take myself and life too serious

    my 2 cents

  • Brandon Hill

    I enjoy my birthday every year, celebration or not I just like the day. While I don’t have the wealth of experience you have @ 40!!!, here are some of the things i’ve learned:

    *Dish detergent goes in the dishwasher not dish soap!!!(Bubbles!!!bubbles!!! save yourself there everywhere…)

    *If I wear a white shirt it is a fact not a possibility that I will spill something on it.

    *Helmets are good!!!

    *Enjoy the little things.

    *I know that you will always be older than me !!!


    Your vastly younger brother

  • Terry Mc

    Hey Barry! I’m coming up fast on the 40 year mark, so you won’t be alone! The last decade has been so enlightening, I don’t know which revelations to share. So here goes:

    “Work” is a four-letter word, also. But so are “Play” and “Love”!! If you are lucky enough to “Work” at a job you “Love”, it will always feel like “Play”

    Never wait to do anything until the “right” time. I kept saying to myself “When the time is right, I’ll meet someone, I’ll get settled, buy a house, be happy.” NOW is the right time and the only time.

    The people we love that leave us are always around. Even more so….

    Family members are made to try your patience, the more you love them, the more patient you need to be.

    Keep your sense of humor, especially with children. They’ll say something that will keep you laughing for years!

    That’s it for me! I hope you had a fan-tab-u-lous birthday! Oh, and for Brandon… Isn’t it GREAT being the youngest! Always the older siblings to pick on!!!! Payback for when we couldn’t.

  • Dave Maxham

    Hey Barry,

    Congratulations on making it, whatever “it” is. I don’t believe your half way there, shoot for 1/3.
    In 56 yrs I’ve learned

    “I have more friends under the age of 5 than most people, and I like that”

    “there comes a point in time, after standing in the rain for so long, that you don’t get any wetter.”

    ” God knows what’s best for me, even if I don’t want to admit it. Jer 29:11 is my life verse”

    “Even at 56, I can still drive around big guys like they’re traffic cones, and then rain threes on them all day”

    “I have no greater joy than to know that my children are walking in the truth.”- 2John

    Love you brother, keep on spreading the light.


  • The Ordained Barista

    I have been at that place where you don’t get any wetter! Too funny. As far as “driving around” big guys like traffic cones? ummmm? No comment!
    Love you man!


  • The Ordained Barista

    True so true…Except for when you were encouraging Brandon? Yeah, No! Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment I hadn’t heard from you in a while!!!!

  • The Ordained Barista

    “Helmets are good” almost made coffee come out my nose. Yes, I will always be older and better looking, with a better jump shot! :)
    Love you bro!

  • Jessie

    With my 23rd approaching in the next week and a half, I have been doing a lot of reflecting on what I’ve learned.
    *Don’t pray for patience. God normally answers that prayer by testing you further to build up the patience (or lack thereof) you currently have. (Garrett told me this, and I have found it to be true.)
    *Don’t do something because it’s what you’re supposed to do. Do something because it’s what you want to do.
    *You’re never too old to learn something new.
    *Be thankful for whatever the weather is. Somewhere else, it is probably 100 times worse.
    *You don’t get to enjoy the successes of life until you have failed at least once.

    There are a bunch more, but these are just the lessons that are most prevalent in my life right now. know that once I hit 40 I’ll learn a lot more. Hope you had a wonderful birthday Barry!!! Tell Rachel I said hi!!!

  • Gina Floyd

    Hey Barry & Rachel..Happy birthday to both of you February birthday friends. A couple of things I have learned…i can’t help but believe the song that says “we are all but one phone call to our knees”. I guess it keeps us humble and appreciative of what we have.. Also, leaving out a tiny ingredient like a tsp of baking soda makes for a lousy batch of chocolate chip cookies… and i wouldn’t trade the chaos of car pools, countless games, dance recitals, fundraisers, making costumes, chaperoning field trips, piles of laundry (well maybe that) because in the midst of it all, we learn how great, how wide and how deep our heavenly father’s love is for us. Blessings to you – glad he made our paths to cross. Hugs to you. Hope your birthdays were great.

  • rachel

    so Barry Hill, i looked up “the significance of the number 40 in the bible” and this is what “wiki answers”says…

    “the number 40 means death plain and simple it rain 40 days and 40 nights they all died who wasnt on noahs arch they wondered the wilderness for 40 years and the old ones died it means death”

    i copied this word for word from wiki answers, letter for letter so obviously, these people can’t spell and also haven’t a clue!

    here’s the thing, the number 40 represents such great things!!
    to name a few…noah and his family were on the ark as it rained for forty days and forty nights, moses was on the mount for 40 days,
    the israelites spent 40 years in the wilderness, and Jesus fasted for forty days while being tempted which now represents the forty days of lent.
    these are all stories of trials , faith, and growth with many blessings that follow.

    see there is hope for forty!! you’ve done your wandering!! yay! forty years of life and now you have nothing but many more rich blessings to follow!

    HaPpY hApPy BiRtHdAy!! big hug xo <3 r

  • The Ordained Barista

    I love you! I am so glad to be done my wandering and you are the biggest reason why! I want you to know that I would wander in the desert for 40 more years as long as you were there by my side. I love you!

  • http://spgutridge.blogspot.com/ Gutty

    Barry, you well know that I passed 40 some time ago. Yet, the thing that stood out the most at 40 was the realization that I survived 40 years and there was not one thing that happened in those 40 years that was the end of the world. I was surprisingly relaxed and less anxious about life. Very few things ever knock me for a loop anymore. The truth of life is there are very few deal breakers. Love Jesus, love others as yourself and most likely the sun will rise again. Whew, what a relief. But I don’t think you can really grasp that until you are 40 or better. Some things just come with age. I love you my friend and celebrate with you.

  • Fred

    Well, we don’t know each other, but I feel a certain kinship as a brother in Christ and a guy who is about to pass the same milemarker this month.

    I know/understand two things more clearly now.

    1. The romans had it right when they assigned “XL” as the numeric designation for 40.
    2. When I was a twenty-something enginerd there was a particular senior team member who would often comment, “I used to be as smart as you.” I understand this now more than ever.

  • The Ordained Barista

    You made coffee come out my nose with that first comment! XL is right buddy! How old will I be at XXL? Yeah, I think all of us, the older we get, cringe when we remember back to our “smartest kid in the room” years. Fred, great wisdom my friend. I hope you will become a subscriber and to hear from you again!