For the last year or so, I have been giving a great deal of thought to the next third of my life. I am 63 and trying to think through what the Lord would have me to be doing throughout the last “season.” According to current estimates, my life expectancy should be around 80 years. That means I have maybe 20 years or so left to invest in kingdom work.
I am definitely a baby boomer and I am part of an aging America. Statistics tell us that over 10,000 people turn 65 every day in our country and the population over 65 will double by the year 2040. So how should all those maturing Christians invest their time, talent and resources for the cause of Christ?
Paul addressed all that in his book to the young preacher, Titus. In chapter two, he directs his attention to older men. He enjoins them to be temperate (balanced), worthy of respect, self-controlled, sound in faith, love and endurance. And he speaks to older women as well. He tells them to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine. He emphasizes that they are to teach that which is good.
And Paul focuses those remarks on the impact their lives can have. They are to be encouragers to the young men and women. These more “mature” folks have the responsibility to pass along what they have learned from their experiences.
Unfortunately, our culture tends to honor youth. We revere the vitality of early life and tend to ignore the influence of those who are older. What an incredible waste of wisdom.
So, this week maybe we all should consider the words of Proverbs 16:31 (The Message): “Grey hair is a mark of distinction, the award for a God-loyal life.” Let’s commit ourselves to pursue a life that warrants that kind of reward.
And then, as we are intentional about decisions that specifically affect our ability to be useful to the Lord, the last third of life can indeed be the most spiritually productive.
Finishing well is an important goal for all of us.
By His Grace and for His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel