aging876

Reflections on aging and family

My great aunt’s recent passing opens a door of reflection. I’ve reached the age where most of those who came before me are gone. Shadows fall on their empty chairs. It’s the way of time and fragility (Hebrews 9:27).

The gray hair and wrinkles in my mirror demand that I take stock. What legacy will I leave behind? What difference will I make in the lives of my family and those of whom I have influence?

Have I armed my daughters with the information to make the right spiritual decisions? They have their own choices, but I hope my instruction has taken root in their hearts (Ephesians 6:4).

What someone will say at my funeral is secondary to the eulogy of reality I write each day. I must take that very seriously because moments take on special urgency. Without God its meaning is of no more value than a rusting tractor.

“The silver-haired head is a crown of glory, If it is found in the way of righteousness” (Proverbs 16:31, NKJV).

We must amass knowledge and applied wisdom in our years or we’ll be of no value to others (Job 12:12; Psalm 90:12; 91:16; Job 32:7). Age isn’t sufficient for respect if we’ve not earned it. Advice and example have degrees of usefulness.

“I remember the days of old; I meditate on all Your works; I muse on the work of Your hands” (Psalm 143:5).

When we age, time should be heavier with value, responsibility and substance. Making a difference is labor intensive. We must foster maturity while so many of our peers revert to childhood petulance and spite.

Let’s leave behind something of lasting value. God, who is all that truly matters in the end, is immune to time, so let’s direct others to the rock that is ageless (Psalm 119:89; Psalm 90:2).

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Richard lives in Florence, Alabama and is married to Deirdre. They have three daughters. He is an avid reader, devoted writer and lover of history and research. He is the author of "The Most Important Question" and is working on more books.

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