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
A new member of the bridge club showed up one afternoon wearing a beautiful gold locket. Another player approached her and said, “That’s such a lovely piece. Do you keep a memento in it?”
“Yes,” the woman answered. “It’s a piece of my husband’s hair I keep to help me remember.”
“Oh, I’m so sorry,” the player replied. “How long ago did he pass away?”
The newcomer quipped, “Pass away? Oh, he’s still alive. It’s his hair that’s gone!”
Someone once said, “Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.” And with so much focus today on doing whatever it takes to stay young, many people completely miss out on a biblical understanding of what it means to age. They miss the fact that their gray hairs, baldness, wrinkles, and aches all have a purpose in the plan of God.
So what is the right biblical understanding of aging? Well, as we see in today’s passage, aging is a lifelong tradeoff of the physical for the spiritual. Young people may have more physical vitality, but are usually less mature spiritually. As we get older, however, we may lose our physical strength, but we grow spiritually and become more equipped to invest in others’ lives.
Be willing to make that tradeoff. Don’t despise growing older. Instead, embrace your aging as a sign that while you may lose physical vigor, you’re growing each day in your spiritual strength!
Pray and ask God to give you a right understanding of aging as a lifelong tradeoff for something much better than physical strength.
Questions for thought
What is the one thing that gives you the most anxiety about aging?
How might this proper understanding of growing older as a tradeoff change your attitude toward aging, as well as impact your relationship with God and others?