Old age hath yet his honor and his toil:
Death closes all: but something ere the end,
Some work of noble note may yet be done…
Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not no that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are.
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield
…. From And Not to Yield by Alfred Lord Tennyson
I watch the runners as they pour on new-found energy on the last lap of the race. They fall across the finish line in exhilarated exhaustion. Some run the best race at the end.
I recently wrote in an article that you’re never too old for an adventure. This has been my mantra since I retired. I started a new career at the age of 54, and had my first full length book published at age 64 soon after we moved to Florida. I work longer hours for little money, but the doors God opens for both of us has been worth the sprint!
I continue to learn at a faster pace than ever before. The hunger for knowledge seems to have been awakened with my sunset years. I joined Toastmasters and learned I really did not know much about public speaking. I continue to stretch my mind with games I never tried to play before.
We have recently moved yet again to start a new life in Hagerstown, Maryland to be nearer our nine grandchildren. More explorations as we investigate so much new territory.
Funny how the last half of my life has been filled with more challenges than the first part … a testament that God is not done with me yet.
Somedays, I think the Lord must laugh at my feebleness and the arrogance that simply because I’m twice as busy, I can still physically do the things I used to do … like master steps again. Yet, God supplies the strength I need when mine is gone all too quickly.
I suppose Alfred Tennyson has it right. As we turn the corner of our last years, God gives us more grace to finish this race he has caused us to run. I am excited that as long as I have breath, there is much God wants me to do, to experience, and to learn. For the work of my hands is not yet completed until he calls me home.
I often joke that I’m still wondering what I’ll be when I grow up. And I expect I’ll ask St. Peter the same question when I meet him at Heaven’s gate.
Beth Moore, in her Bible study series, “Entrusted,” remarks that whatever God has called you to do is not dependent upon how old you are. God continues to instill dreams within us, as long as we journey upon this earth. “This may be your when,” she says.
This may be when God says, “It’s time to embark on your next great adventure.”
Thankfully, God does not judge us according to how fast we go. He either redesigns the track for us to run our own race, or he stands behind us, the wind against our back to complete our sprint.
Even to your old age and gray hairs
I am he, I am he who will sustain you.
I have made you and I will carry you;
I will sustain you and I will rescue you.
Isaiah 46:4 NIV