Have you ever noticed in the Bible this pitifully sad description of old age that King Solomon gave us 3000 years ago? He wrote,
Don’t let the excitement of being young cause you to forget about your Creator. Honor him in your youth before the evil years come–when you’ll no longer enjoy living. It will be too late then to try to remember him when the sun and light and moon and stars are dim to your old eyes, and there is no silver lining left among your clouds [no doubt a reference to losing his hair]. For there will come a time when your limbs will tremble with age…and your teeth will be too few to do their work….Then let your lips be tightly closed while eating when your teeth are gone! …you will waken at dawn with the first note of the birds; but you yourself will be deaf and tuneless, with quavering voice.
Here Solomon really gets negative and depressing, as he continues:
You will be afraid of heights and of falling–a white-haired, withered old man, dragging himself along…,standing at death’s door, and nearing his everlasting home as the mourners go along the streets (Ecclesiastes 12:1-5 LB).
What a gloomy description of old age, or as Solomon calls them, “the evil years”! Reality is that the senior years are just as much a part of life as childhood is—and equally important to God. What is vital is to live these years to the fullest.
When a tourist became stranded while climbing a high peak in the Alps, in an effort to save him, an experienced mountain guide lost his life. On his burial site, his friends honored his unselfish act by erecting a monument inscribed with these words: “HE DIED CLIMBING.”[i]
What a noble goal for all of us! No matter what your age, never stop climbing. As God gives you strength, pursue His purpose for your life. Keep climbing until the joyous day you stand in His presence face to face.
[i] H.G.B., “Our Daily Bread,” produced by Radio Bible Class, Grand Rapids, MI, November 26, 1980.
What purpose has God given you that you can share with others?