Too Old?

This past week Reassurance had the honor of ministering to the residents of one of the local assisted living facilities. As I looked into the faces of those wonderful folks while we were singing I began to realize that there was a real possibility that some of them have never put their faith and trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. And there for a few minutes I was overwhelmed with a feeling of sadness like I haven’t had in a long time. How tragic it would be for anyone to live eighty, ninety or a hundred years and then die without Him. But the fact is that no matter the age, young or old, it is a tragedy.

We look at the elderly different from other folks. Sometimes we see them as innocent children as though they have not reached the age of understanding and accountability. Other times we see some of them as resentful and bitter old people who are not at all concerned about anyone else, only themselves. However, a lot of times we assume that because of their age they have made things right in their life. Obviously, we have no right or reason to assume any of those things. They are really no different from folks younger than them except their bodies and minds have endured many more miles of rough road.

The real story about these people is that they have stored up a tremendous amount of knowledge and wisdom that we have yet to gain. And we do not take advantage of that like we should. It seems that today’s generations have somewhat written them off and tossed them aside. But I believe that God still loves them and wants to have a personal relationship with them. He wants to use them just like he wants to use us. And it is all for His glory. The Bible teaches that as believers the old are to teach the young and that the young are to treat them with respect.

To tell you the truth, I love being with those people. I love how they can be so open to you as though you are their kin. I love how they react and interact as we minister in the places where they are. And every time I am reminded of the two elderly folks in my life that had a great impact on me and played a part in me coming to know the Lord. I believe we need to encourage them to play a more active part in the lives of those around them and finish strong. I’ll do my part in doing that and I hope you will when the opportunity arises.  

Real Treasures

As I reflect back on all of the events in my life of the past week, I am ashamed to say that I have not been as thankful as I should be for all that the Lord has done for me. After the storm damage we incurred a couple of weeks ago and all of the activity associated with the cleanup and restoration, I have found myself so involved in the details of it all that I have not paused and taken the time to give thanks for all of the real treasures God has blessed me with. And these treasures I speak of are not the material things that were lost during that time but are of a very different nature. So let me tell you about some of them.

Let me begin with family. I am blessed with a wonderful wife of almost 50 years. She has been my best friend and my confidant for all these years and I can’t imagine spending any part of my remaining life without her by my side. I love her in a way that I can’t put into words. We have three amazing daughters who are raising families of their own and doing quite a good job I must say. I have watched them grow and mature through the good times and the bad and I believe it is because they have a strong foundation to stand on. And my grandchildren. What can I say? We love them so much that we can’t seem to do enough to show them how proud we are of them. These all are real treasures in my life that God has given me in spite of my sin and failures. And I am so thankful for all of them.

How about friends? Again, I am blessed with some great friends that I know would be there for me and my family in times of distress. They exemplify the very nature of what it means to help bear one another’s burdens. Many people go through life without having one person they can call a true friend but I have several. And these are real treasures that God has blessed me with. And I am so thankful for all of them.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention some of the most basic treasures I have. I have a good job that has allowed me to take care of my family. I have reasonably good health for my age inspire of my previous heart attack and present heart condition. I can still walk, talk, hear, see, and smell. I have lived a relatively long life compared to many others and even though there is no promise of tomorrow I look forward to every day here on earth. All of these are also real treasures from God’s storehouse of blessings and I am so thankful for all of them.

But now consider the greatest treasure of all. I have a personal relationship with the Son of God, the one who was willing to give His life to pay my sin debt and set me free from the very bondage of that sin. I have direct access to God the Father anytime I need to call on Him. I have an advocate with the Father who is ever interceding on my behalf. His name is Jesus and I belong to Him. Not for anything that I have done but simply because of who He is and what He did at Calvary. There is no treasure greater than this and I am so thankful that God’s gift of salvation.

If you have noticed, I have not mentioned material possessions at all. And I think it is obvious why. Real treasures are found in people and other things that are intangible. And the greatest treasure of all is found in my dearest friend, Jesus. I sincerely hope He is yours.