Monday, December 10, 2012


OK, is it just me?

Or is anybody else out there sick and tired of a body that gets sick and tired??

(And achy, and creaky, and wrinkled, and saggy, and gray…)

I was reminded of my bodily dismay just a few days ago.  "The Hub" and I were at a pharmacy picking up a prescription for an infection I have.  (I rest my case on the aggravation issue…)

There were a few people in line ahead of us, and a few sitting on chairs.  Not wanting to butt into line, we asked if any of the "sitters" were actually "waiters".

One gentleman told us that he was ahead of us, but his recent knee replacement made it difficult to stand for any length of time.

He was roughly our age, and we began a conversation about his motorcycle accident and torn ACL.  It reminded me of the various aches and pains that we're experiencing.  "The Hub's" shoulder surgery and broken ankle my magical menopause mystery tour…

At some point, though I didn't say it out loud, I thought of that old adage: "Well, at least it's better than the alternative."  

When I got home, I got to thinking.

I think maybe I've got it all wrong.  Actually, this life ISN'T better than the alternative.

So, I want to explore three questions:

Why am I fighting aging so much?

Why do I think that aging means a diminishing state of existence?

How does God view aging?


First of all, why am I fighting aging so much?  

I think there's several reasons.  One is the youth-obsessed society that we live in.  Our culture is myopically fixated on the bodyhow it works, how it looks, how it ages (or doesn't).  I'm all for doing everything we can to take care of our bodies – in fact, I think that God directs us to do that.  We are His temple, after all.

But this single-minded pursuit of youthfulness, and the intolerance toward any sign of aging I don't think that comes from God.

So, at some level, I am influenced by my culture.

That's the bad news.

But the other reason that I think I fight aging is spiritual.  I believe that God created us with eternity in our hearts (He does say that!) – and at some level, I think our spirits know that this mortal state is not what we were created for.

We were created for eternal life.  We were created perfect.

Sin has messed that all up.

Some of my fight against aging is not good – but the part of me that rebels against Satan's weapons of sin, disease, and death – I believe that is understandable and commendable.

"Don't you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself…" 
(1 Corinthians 6:19, NLT)

"He has planted eternity in the human heart…" (Ecclesiastes 3:11, NLT)

Second, why do I think that aging is a diminishing state of existence?

Again, I think culture plays a role in that.  

The elderly are often abused, marginalized, discriminated against.  In a youth-oriented culture, old people are often considered refuse, baggage – useless.

This wasn't always the case.  

Not so long ago, the elderly were revered and honored.  Their advice and counsel was sought out.  Their wisdom was esteemed, and their knowledge and experience were admired.

I vividly remember my grandparents, and some of my great-grandparents.  I thought they were the most wonderful people on the planet.

And older believers always bless me.

They have a sense of peace about them – a peace that I think comes from walking many steps with the Lord.  I want to know what their faith is like – I want them to teach me.  And some day, if God chooses to bless me with old age, I want to be like them.

The diminishing is really just a physical thing.  As my body ages, my spirit has the opportunity to soar.

"So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day." (2 Corinthians 4:16, ESV)

"Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him." (Colossians 3:10, NLT)

Finally, how does God view aging?

Fortunately, He is a lot more gracious than we are!

I found these wonderful verses on a website:

"Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained by living a godly life." 
(Proverbs 16:31, NLT)

"The glory of the young is their strength; the gray hair of experience is the splendor of the old." (Proverbs 20:29, NLT)

"I will be your God throughout your lifetime -- until your hair is white with age. I made you, and I will care for you.  I will carry you along and save you." (Isaiah 46:4, NLT)

"Grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged…" (Proverbs 17:6, NLT)

"Show your fear of God by standing up in the presence of elderly people and showing respect for the aged. I am the LORD." (Leviticus 19:32, NLT)

And this next one is my personal favorite.  Especially in view of my post last week – when I was bemoaning some *shelf sitting* in my life…

"The godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon. For they are transplanted into the LORD's own house.  They flourish in the courts of our God. Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green." (Psalm 92:12-14, NLT)

God's values are a far cry from our own.  

He does not look at the elderly as disposable.  NO!  In fact, the elderly are promised God's continuing concern.  He does not look at the elderly as worthless and useless.  NO!  In fact, the elderly are important fruit-producers in the Body of Christ.

Vital and green.  (I like the sound of that!)

YES!  God loves every one of my (dyed) gray hairs.  He loves my wrinkles and sags.  And though He doesn't enjoy my aches and pains, and though He understands what it feels like to be sick and tired… 


He entered into our world.  He became a human.  And though He didn't grow into old age, He still felt the pain of aging – He suffered the horror of dying…

He understood the *disconnect* between eternity and earthly mortality.

And He did it so we could have LIFE!

Life now on earth until His work in and through us is done – and life everlasting in the glory of His presence.

From birth until forever, He is my God…

"He will take our weak mortal bodies and change them into glorious bodies like his own, using the same power with which he will bring everything under his control." (Philippians 3:21, NLT)


Are you aging gracefully?  Why or why not?

BLOG = "Blessedly Leaning On God!"


  1. From one older lady to another not quite so old.:) I enjoyed?!!:) reading your blog. No I don't think I am very graceful about ageing, don't like the gray hairs, wrinkles or sags and definitely don't appreciate the aches and pains and limitations (i.e. the once I could have done that so easily, but now, not so) However, when I am Zumbaring as I have just been doing, I feel slightly more ageless.

    Also as my brother was saying to me, last week, when you hear about something that will happen in 20 or so years time, you tend to think I will probably not be around and it can be a strange feeling.

    Well will not write a blog on here, so will close now.

  2. Oh, Anita, these are some favorite scriptures that bring me great comfort as I age and I have been clinging to them these last few years. I thought when I turned sixty that I would start to feel terrible and energy would be gone, etc., etc. But, it isn't true. In fact, I believe the old saying that "You're as young as you feel" is true. Our minds play such an important role in how our bodies respond to everything. Truly, we must meditate on the truth of His word to see our lives changed and embrace every season, even old age. The Lord will never fail us if we stay in step with the Spirit!
    I hope you and your family are enjoying a blessed Christmas season!

  3. I fear I'm not gracefully aging, Sharon. I seem to groan and complain a lot about this ache or that ache. Great reminder how God views us as we age. You are right, Sharon, we do live in a youth infested population so to speak. Our elderly and aging are not as appreciated as they once were. I see that especially too in the work place which is sad because the aging (those in their late 50s) have so much to offer in knowledge and wisdom but are often looked the other way against because of their age.


  4. My favorite part of your post was the realization that we were created for eternity. Amazing how that eternal perspective changes everything. I hope I grow old gracefully too. It's hard to slow down when for so long we could run!

  5. I don't know whether I am aging gracefully or not, but I do still feel young inside so the outside doesn't bother me too much...although it does aggravate me sometimes to try to read the tiny writing on some packaging when I shop...I use my magnifying glass to remedy this at home!

    My grandparents will always be the wisest people in my a grandparent myself now, I feel at a loss sometimes in that department, but I ask the Lord to help me be the type influence on my grandchildren that they will always remember that I trusted Him for everything...

  6. Hi Sharon! Your post first brought to mind a little saying that I discovered on a sugar packet years and years ago. (Yes, I saved it...I don't know why because when I found it I was probably only 16 and didn't even know what getting older truly was...) But, anyway, the saying is: "Age is a matter of mind. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter!" True, don't you think? Age (and old age) is only something depressing if we let it be. God loves us in each season of our lives and even though we are to enjoy the blessing of life He has given us, our advancing years only take us closer to eternity with Him. So, I guess age is just a matter of mind...and I don't mind! =)

    Blessings, Joan

  7. I do soooo relate. Health, strength and a lack of pain are a blessing. I enjoyed reading this today. I found you through The Beauty in His Grip.

    Blessings and shalom to you and yours

  8. There are some things i don't mind about aging and others I hate. I am very comfortable in the stage of life I am in but I don't like the aches and pains that go with it. I have a friend that says aches and pains make us long for heaven more, to help us remember that this is not our home....that there are better days ahead in eternity.

  9. Oh, friend, changing seasons are challenging even when they are welcomed. I appreciate your honesty, vulnerability and the uplifting verses that puts our perspective back on heaven. Yes, part of aging is our mental attitude towards it...but part is just the plain old reality of an uncooperative body. But I plan to stay a girl on the inside as long as I can...and I know I will always be God's girl, just like you! Love you!

  10. I read this, and then before making this comment, I STOOD up on my creaky knees, raised my aching arms in the air and said AMEN.

    (In my head, it didn't sound like an old woman's voice either)

    This is excellent. There are so many verses that you have here that I want to commit to memory and/or study.

    So, how are those old bones of yours feeling today?

  11. Sharon, thanks for your words of encouragement and perspective! This life is but a blink of an eye, and we will be in His arms, soon! I am so grateful for a healthy body and know that as it grows older, things will change, but HIS LOVE never changes and that, I can count on!
    Love you!!!

  12. I don't know if I would say I am aging gracefully, but I know I love where my spirit is more than how it was in my younger years. I do get very tired of "no ears to hear or respect" I seem to receive from those in their 30's down...I hate being look at like I need to be put out to pasture...this part of our culture isn't good. God used so many in their wiser years...and while I am waiting for Him to take me home I want to do all He has called me to do...even if culture is setting so many of us out to pasture.

  13. Hi Sharon, I found your blog over at Joan's and I am so glad I did. I love this post. Firstly because I think it is so important to test our perspectives through the eyes of the Lord's Word and you have done that so well in this post. And secondly because I too am becoming a little concerned with aging. Man, its not fun. Operation "improve with age" started the 1st of Dec and me, myself, and I enlisted but it is most certainly a process. One I need to temper with God's ways and not the world's.
    God bless
    ps: would love you to link this post over at Winsome Wednesday bloghop so others can see this post too.
    And another ps: Love your acronym for blog. Excellent!

  14. Having just turned 50, I've been thinking about a lot of these same things. Trying to keep on seeing with spiritual eyes instead of only physical ones.

  15. I have an older friend whose father is 92. Okay he does have some aches and pains...but boy this guy is amazing. He gets up at 4 a.m. just to pray and his attitude shames me. He's happy...and mostly content. Me? I get too restless at times. He's a great model to me what I should try to be like.

  16. One of the things I'm most impressed about with getting older is the realization that the spirit doesn't age. The body certainly does as I'm reminded of constantly. Wow, I'll be good and ready for that new body some day.

  17. Yes our bodies may be on the decline, but wisdom is still growing. Well with all my gray I should be filled with wisdom. LOL I am letting my gray out. Or I should say more silver. Yes letting go of how my body is growing old is very hard to take, I do think I need to take better care of my body as it is God's creation. But I do think the growth in God's wisdom is far more important then being consumed by how we look. Learn to shine from within.


"So [I] have been greatly encouraged in the midst of [my] troubles and suffering, dear brothers and sisters, because you have remained strong in your faith. It gives [me] new life to know that you are standing firm in the Lord. How [I] thank God for you!" (1 Thessalonians 3:7-9)

Thanks for your comments - it is such a joy to be sharing my journey with friends like YOU!

(NOTE: Anonymous comments will be removed. Thank you for understanding.)