I remember sitting around with my mom and her friends and listening to them talk about their aches and pains, and woes of wrinkles and fatigue – all from growing just a little older. And yep, like most 30 something’s I just thought, “If you would exercise more you would be in shape,” or “Evidently you haven’t taken care of your skin.”
Oh my! When I think of my condescending and judgmental thoughts now, I realize I have become my mom and my friends have become hers. Time and my body have truly humbled me.
It really hit home recently when our 8 year old grandson looked at a 10 year old picture of my husband (Tom) and me and said, “Papa looks the same but Nana looks a lot younger in that picture.” Oh, how I was hoping he was going to say, “Nana looks a lot younger NOW!” But alas, he did not.
So, I face what others my age are facing, the fruit of growing a little older. The problem is…I’m the same inside, but nobody can see inside. They only see that I have bags under my eyes, things…um…sag, spots appear, weight hangs on in places and hair shows up where it should not. Sleep is elusive at times and things hurt; things I didn’t even know I had!
Back in the day, before all this, I proudly proclaimed I would grow old graciously. Well, so much for that – I’ve given up on that silly idea. These days I’m slowly coming to terms with the fact that my body is growing older but I still have my mind. Most days. Well, some days.
I’m aware of the fact that our society respects age less and less. In just about every profession (including ministry) “older” people have been replaced by youth. Wisdom is not honored. I don’t understand that. I remember as a young Christian longing to learn from the ones who had been Christians for years. I wanted them to help me.
I still have that mindset. There are Godly women who have helped to shape my life and I joke with them and tell them they’re not allowed to die before me! I need their wisdom.
More than that, I have promises from God’s Word about growing older. Losing both parents was a huge wake-up call that this thing we call life here, is only the beginning. We have an entire life waiting ahead of us.
But either way, whether I’m respected or not for my age, I have great and precious promises from God’s Word. We are told that the righteous will, “flourish like a palm tree….they will still bear fruit in old age…proclaiming “The Lord is upright; He is my rock…”
And my favorite, “I have cared for you since you were born. Yes, I carried you before you were born. I will be your God throughout your lifetime – until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you. I will carry you along and save you.” (Isaiah 46:3b-4)
So, ladies (and gentlemen), let’s proclaim about our Lord! Let’s trust God into our future and old age! Let’s continue to love and live, grow and give, learn from others (even the youth), and seek with all our hearts to glorify our Father in heaven, bearing fruit as we seek and serve Him!