I would post the following famous statement from American history.
The date was August 18, 1805. The place was the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. The occasion was his 31st birthday, while he was trekking across previously uncharted territory exploring the Louisiana Purchase for then President Thomas Jefferson. The man was Captain Meriwether Lewis of the Corps of Discovery. The journal entry he made was as follows:
“This day I completed my thirty first year, and conceived
that I had in all human probability now existed about half
the period which I am to remain in this sublunary world. I reflected that I had as yet done but little, very little indeed, to further the happiness of the human race, or to advance
the information of the succeeding generation. I viewed with regret the many hours I have spent in indolence, and now sorely feel the want of that information which those hours would have given me had they been judiciously expended.
But since they are past and cannot be recalled, I dash from
me the gloomy thought and resolved in future, to redouble my exertions and at least endeavor to promote those two primary objects of human existence, by giving them the aid
of that portion of talents which nature and fortune have bestowed on me; or in future, to live for mankind, as I have heretofore lived for myself."
Food for thought: especially for anyone pausing on their own birthday for a time of reflection on the significance of their life - which is obviously where I am this week. Like Lewis, I hope
that what I am doing with my life is making a difference. I hope what I have done has mattered in this world. And I hope in what time I have left that I can continue to make a difference in the lives of my fellow man- not only for this world, but for the world to come as well.