The Thing About Aging

I’ve done a lot of thinking over the past couple of months about what is really important to me and about who I really am……………..deep down to the bone.

To be honest, there are days when it is difficult for me to look in the mirror when I know the truth about what’s going on inside of my head.

I have to “take my thoughts captive” many times every single day (II Cor. 10:5)  in order to feel the peace promised to those who trust in Jesus.

And today is one of those days, because today I’m thinking about aging.

That’s right.

Getting old.

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Not the physical part so much……

Wrinkles

Gray hair

Aching bones

I’ve learned to live with those things for the most part (or I’ve figured out a way to hide most of them anyway).

It’s the other part of aging that’s really on my mind.

The part about how short life really is.

A vapor.

A mist.

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Tomorrow I’ll be 50.

It feels surreal even seeing those words in a sentence typed by my fingers,

but today just seems like a good day to think about aging and what I can learn from this unstoppable reality of life.

Isn’t life just a series of lessons anyway?

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Here’s the thing about aging that gets me every single time:

I can’t stop it.

That’s it.

I can’t keep myself from growing old.

I could complicate the topic with all kinds of different realities of the aging process,

but for me, just accepting the truth that growing old is a natural part of life is enough.

Because when I accept it,

I begin to realize just how precious every second of life really is.

I’ll never get back the time I spent typing these words,

so I want my words to mean something.

I want my words to hold eternal value.

And if that’s how I feel about writing,

shouldn’t everything about my life be viewed in the exact same way?

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My conversations at work, in the car, around the kitchen table, by the pool, over coffee with a friend, or even in a text……………

how would they change if I saw them all as equally significant?

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I think that’s why I love talking to people who have embraced aging.

They understand that every second matters.

They view minutes on the clock as treasures rather than dollars in the bank.

They appreciate the sunrise because they realize it is a undeserving gift……….another day………….more minutes…………..a new jewel in their treasure box of time.

So, for me, the thing about aging is this:

I can’t stop it and that’s okay.

If I could, I may not cherish today.

I may miss the chance to walk with a friend or have a silly conversation through texting.

I may skip the ball game or the concert or the game of corn hole in the back yard.

I may pass up the movie or the little after-school talk in the kitchen.

I know this is true, because I’ve done it.

Time and time again.

I’ve lived years thinking time was somehow on hold for me,

so I could work more and do more and be more.

And all the while,

time was ticking away.

Not in a panicked sense, but in a very methodical, consistent way.

Tick

Tock

Time is passing.

I’m now closer to 50 than I was when I started this post, and how do I feel about the time I’ve spent writing this?

The time I can never have back?

I feel good.

Because I’m even more aware of how wonderful it feels to know I can’t stop the aging process.

Tomorrow I will be 50.

Is that a big deal?

Not really.

It just means I only have one chance to get my last day of 49 right.

I hope you’ll get your day right too.

Tomorrow, it will be gone.

Tick

Tock

Time is passing.

Lord, help me learn to treasure every second.

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“Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.

Remind me that my days are numbered–how fleeting my life is.” (NIV)

Psalm 39:4

 

 

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