Sunday 15 July 2012


 As American humorist, Mark Twain, puts it: “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.”

The Bible associates ageing with the ebbing away of various faculties resulting in a general slowing down, frailty, insomnia and a diminished zest for life. Life’s pleasures seem to be less enjoyable, contributed in part by the loss of teeth (Ecclesiastes 12:1-7). In the worst case scenario, it may mean a loss of will to live.

Some seniors can get carried away by this notion, seeing themselves as old and decrepit even when they are not.

Others, in contrast, feel strong like the cedars of Lebanon, able to remain productive and useful to a ripe old age.

Consider Caleb who, even in his eighties, still looked forward to conquering new lands and defeating his enemies. “Give me this mountain which God has promised me.” That was his battle cry. But often our enemies are not out there but within—we are sometimes our own worst enemies. When we view ourselves negatively, we not only shortchange ourselves but miss out on what God has in store for us (Joshua 14:10-12).

Our grey-haired years can be the golden period. By lifestyle modification, good personal healthcare and a positive mental attitude, we can delay the inevitable effects of ageing and still remain active, upbeat and productive.

Bob Buford, author of Half Time, believes that in the second half of our life, we should be moving from success to significance. Armed with wisdom, experience, skill and training acquired through the years, retirees can contribute much to the home, church and community. Many would have attained financial stability and thus have the financial resources to help others. All these factors plus God’s empowerment enable seniors to lead fulfilling lives with eternal significance.

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