What does the Bible say about aging, time, life etc.? Lots actually. As I write this, a dear friend lies in her hospital bed and I wonder where she will be by the time you read this. I do not view death as an enemy, merely a door, but I am amazed at how quickly that door comes in to view. It seems like yesterday that my dear friend was baking cookies as a half time snack for the hotly contested ping pong game that was taking place in her basement. What a journey.
We have Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, “A time for all seasons” that helps us understand that each of us is on a journey through time, and in that journey, we will experience a variety of “times.” Some of them will be good and some of them will be hard. If you haven’t read this text in a while, take a moment and do so. It’s worth the time (pun intended).
There is also Job 12:12, “Wisdom is with theaged, and understanding in length of days.” (ESV) Maybe it is because I am now among the aged, but it really does seem like age brings a lived wisdom. Isn’t it frustrating when you try and help a young person not make the mistakes you made and even as you are talking you can see that it is falling on deaf ears? Everyone has to live their own lives and life is such that each generation has to learn the same thing by making the same mistakes. But, that’s life. Maybe the best we can do is, “Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time.” (Colossians 4:5 ESV)
If things continue on as they have since I have been alive, history will probably look back on this time as an era of slow change, but for me it seems incredibly fast. I struggle to keep up with changes that young people don’t even seem to notice.
So how do you keep up with the times, or even know what time it is? Simple, it is what it is. And now I’m back to Ecclesiastes 3:1, “Foreverything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven.” So, what time is it? I don’t know what time it is for you; for me, it’s time to go, but before I do, let me share a poem I wrote that sums up for me how getting older feels.
“On Aging” -by Cliff Caton
Some days the time I have left seems so short it takes my breath away,
Other days it seems so long it makes me groan.
Now go hug someone you love, you may not be able to tomorrow.