As we become older, we usually begin experiencing physical changes. We may gradually lose our energy, or, as my mother would say, “I feel like my get up and go, got up and went.” What we could do in one day, may now take several days to complete. Our mind and soul are willing, but our body isn’t!
We may begin to question our worth, and even our worth to God. We remember the days of teaching Children’s Sunday School, assisting with the Youth Choir, helping with Vacation Bible School, or leading a small group. It can be depressing to realize those days are gone, and will only be a memory. However, God can still use each of us for his glory.
In the Bible, God used many people in their older years. God appeared to Abraham and promised to make his descendants into a great nation. For this to happen, Abraham had to obey God and travel to Egypt. He was 75 when he began this journey. (Genesis 12:1-4)
Anna’s brief marriage ended in widowhood, and she spent the remainder of her eighty-four years as a prophetess. She never left the temple, and worshiped day and night, fasting and praying. Simeon was also older, and it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he saw the Messiah. Simeon and Anna were in the temple when Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to be baptized. Both of them recognized Jesus identity as the Messiah, and they both gave God praise for the Savior. (Luke 2:21-38).
Moses was the leader of the Israelites. He was the author of the Pentateuch. He was also the recorder of the Ten Commandments. At the age of 80, Moses was chosen to lead the Israelites out of Egyptian bondage. His brother, Aaron, also lead the Israelites, and he was 83. (Exodus 7:7).
God wants to continue to use us, even in our older years. Psalm 92:14-15 tell us “They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming The Lord is upright; he is my Rock, and there is not wickedness in Him”. Job 12:12 asks “Is not wisdom found among the aged? Does not long life bring understanding.” Deuteronomy 32:7 tells us to “Remember the days of old; consider the generations long past. Ask your father and he will tell you, your elders, and they will explain to you”.
If you are approaching, or in your “golden years”, remember that advancing age does not limit your usefulness. God can make each phase of life useful and meaningful.
You have a life-time of wisdom that can be shared with those who are younger. This wisdom could be shared with a family with young children. Perhaps you could walk alongside these parents, giving them words of encouragement.
If it is difficult for you to leave home, consider sending cards and making phone calls. One thing that we can all do, is pray. We can pray for the sick, our families, our leaders, our church; anyone God lays on our heart.
You can “still bear fruit in old age”.