Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

Reflections on Aging

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When I was ending my career, the organization I worked at provided us a session with a well-known financial organization. We were told that we were leaving at a time when we were most likely in good health, had plenty of time and money. He called those the “Go Go Years”. He told us that as we get older and perhaps in not such good health, we would move into the “Slow Go Years”. And later yet, we would move into the “No Go Years”.
I find myself in the “Go Go Years”. Yet, an honest reflection tells me that I am now retired, both my wife and I have lost all of our parents, I am on Social Security and Medicare. I don’t often think about my decreasing life expectancy. No, in my mind – unless I look into the mirror – I’m about half of my true age. But there are times when I am reminded just what my true age is.
Here are a few of those times.

  • Recently I played disc golf at the course across the street from our home for the first time this season, and I was really sore for the next few days. I was raking the yard and preparing to put down grass seed, wondering how many days it would take me to recover.
  • A few months ago, in our NXTGEN Pastors Cohort, which is comprised of seminary students and one of our pastors, we were asked as part of introductions, to state our age. Although I knew it of course, it was still hard to hear that I was more than forty years older than some of the guys present.
  • Our church has just constructed a new multipurpose building, which includes a full-length basketball court. I’ve been hearing a lot about how excited some of the young guys in our church are about playing basketball there. A few days ago, one of them asked me if I had ever Although it’s hard for me to believe, I may have been playing at my peak, and having the most fun playing, fifty years ago, and I haven’t even picked up a basketball for several years.

Not long ago, I read the book Retiring Well: Strategies for Finding Balance, Setting Priorities, and Glorifying God by John Dunlop. The author mentioned the almost inevitable physical and mental decline that will impact us if we live long enough. I have thought about that often since reading the book. We don’t know how much time we have left, and we’re not guaranteed our next breath. I’m now seven year older than my Mom was when she died in 1996, and just seventeen years short of the age my Dad was when he died in 2020.
Dunlop tells us that an essential way to maximize how our retirement years can bring glory to God is to take care of the body and mind he has entrusted to us. One way I care for my body is by walking five miles each day. Some of the ways I keep my mind sharp are by reading books and listening to sermons or my favorite podcasts.
Dunlop’s book is organized around ten different strategies toward a retirement that brings glory to God. I want to live a retirement that brings glory to God all the way up to my last breath.
How about you? Maybe you are much younger than me. Perhaps you are you in the “Go Go Years”, the “Slow Go Years”, or the “No Go Years”. Regardless of your age, how are you living to bring glory to God?

Author: Bill Pence

I’m Bill Pence – married to my best friend Tammy, a graduate of Covenant Seminary, St. Louis Cardinals fan, formerly a manager at a Fortune 50 organization, and in leadership at my local church. I am a life-long learner and have a passion to help people develop, and to use their strengths to their fullest potential. I am an INTJ on Myers-Briggs, 3 on the Enneagram, my top five Strengthsfinder themes are: Belief, Responsibility, Learner, Harmony, and Achiever, and my two StandOut strength roles are Creator and Equalizer. My favorite book is the Bible, with Romans my favorite book of the Bible, and Colossians 3:23 and 2 Corinthians 5:21 being my favorite verses. Some of my other favorite books are The Holiness of God and Chosen by God by R.C. Sproul, and Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper. I enjoy music in a variety of genres, including modern hymns, Christian hip-hop and classic rock. My book Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the Workplace and Tammy’s book Study, Savor and Share Scripture: Becoming What We Behold are available in paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon.

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