Time does not stop. We blink and suddenly another decade has passed. And while part of us doesn’t feel any older, our bodies are often quick to tell us a different story. Aging is simply part of life in this world to be accepted with much humility and grace.
To be sure, maturity is optional, but none of us can escape the reality of aging – even with modern medicine and technology allowing us to live longer and healthier lives. But, unfortunately, this adventure of aging doesn’t hold an honored place for most of us once we reach adulthood. In fact, we’re often willing to entertain many extreme measures to hold on to our youth.
And our resistance to accept our aging process can cause us to become envious and jealous of the next generation, hyper-focused on maintaining our status, vulnerable to temptations that allow us to feel young again, and neglectful in our duty to pass the baton and guide those coming after us.
To be fair, aging with humility and grace requires us to grieve – letting go of who we were yesterday to accept who we are today. While there’s sadness and disappointment here, grief is a path that honors our losses while also freeing us to live well today.
We must also cultivate a more compelling vision of getting older. While the glory of a young man is his strength, the glory of the aged is in his gray hair. Getting older doesn’t make us washed up and obsolete. We simply have a different glory to share – namely the wisdom gained through our many years of living. And this wisdom is needed to equip the next generation for the tasks ahead of them.
In the end, it takes maturity to accept aging with humility and grace. But this frees us to continue loving and making an impact for good. Things might look different with age, but we’re still called to make a meaningful difference in each season of life.