Reflecting on Aging

Age is just a number.

You’re only as old as you think.

We’ve all heard these or similar sayings. I think I get the sentiment they express – age shouldn’t hold you back from being, accomplishing, and doing. At the same time, midlife has begun to show me that age does impact all these areas.

It’s not that I can’t accomplish and be productive; it’s that my body and mind function differently than they used to. In other words, I don’t operate the same mentally or physically as I did in my 20s, 30s, or even just a decade ago. I shouldn’t, either. Not only that, but in many ways I don’t want to be the same as I was in my younger days. I don’t want to think and act the way I did when I was less mature.

Admittedly, I would like some physical reboots, but I wouldn’t trade what I am today in total for what I was at any point in my past. Though I might redo some aspects, I wouldn’t change most things. Even cherry picking from parts of me would be difficult because of the intertwining of all aspects of who I was with who I have become.

The Bible and Aging

Before just a couple of years ago, I honestly never paid attention to Bible verses about aging. Now, though, they are ministering to me in surprising ways. Here are some examples:

  • While I’m physically wasting away, my inner self is renewed daily. In a sense, then, I’m not aging at all. (2 Corinthians 4:16)
  • Splendor is found with gray hair. All that comes with aging produces something otherwise unobtainable. (Proverbs 16:31; Proverbs 20:29)
  • Wisdom and understanding come with age. I didn’t know how much I didn’t have when I was younger. (Job 12:12)
  • The righteous bear fruit in old age. Rewards come from living for Jesus. (Psalm 92:12-15)
  • Be appreciative and respectful and teach others. There’s still work to do. (Titus 2:3)
  • God sustains me all the days of my life. He’s never failed me and never will. (Isaiah 46:4)

Though I’m not sure what “act your age” means right now, I am sure that God still has purpose for me. Rather than having my best years behind me, they are in many ways still ahead.