Growing old gracefully - Hope 103.2

Growing old gracefully

By David ReayWednesday 14 Dec 2016LifeWords DevotionalsFaithReading Time: 0 minutes


Read Proverbs 20:29

29         The glory of youths is their strength,
                 but the beauty of the aged is their gray hair. (NRSV)

The search for some mythical elixir of youth is a recurring theme in literature. Growing old is regarded as a defeat. Youth is good, old age is bad. This leads some to seek to preserve their youthfulness. Such a desire allows cosmetic surgeons to take lavish holidays and lets cosmetic manufacturers accrue large profits.

And yet our bodies will inevitably grow old. Joints deteriorate, skin wrinkles, our senses fade. This can be extremely distressing or it can be merely inconvenient. But trying to turn back the tide of ageing is futile and frustrating. Agreed, we take the best possible care of ourselves and we take care with our appearance whatever age we may be.

However, there are limits. Someone who desperately tries to look youthful may end up looking rather silly. It becomes a game of pretence. To consistently cast longing glances at our past youthfulness may mean we miss out on the special aspects of growing older. Our lives have their seasons, and trying to cling to one may mean we miss out on another.

We certainly won’t become fatalistic and gloomy about growing old. We will not give up on life because of our mortality. Rather, in every phase of our life we will, with God’s wisdom, act our age.

David Reay