Today, being Friday, I’m off. Or, at least I am home. I’m not complaining. I’m very grateful just to be home.
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about staying fresh and alive for the next twenty years. I am 53 years old. Not a bad age to be. In fact, I am really enjoying this time of life. I’m blessed with good health and have a great family. However, I would be less than honest if I didn’t tell you there are reasons to pay attention to this time of life.
This is what I have seen:
- Mid-life men who get overly focused on retirement. They are not thinking about moving into a new line of work or a new cause. Their idea of retirement is to do absolutely nothing but play. Probably a nice prescription for an early death (physically and/or mentally).
- Some people at mid-life find themselves a new "honey." As a result, a marriage dissolves. Children are heartbroken. Friendships are damaged or even destroyed. Meanwhile, this man or woman believes this is his or her shot at "happiness." (By the way, as you get attached to another person, your own dissatisfaction with your mate increases, giving you even more rationalization for the mess you are creating.)
- Some people get focused on being "old." They talk about being old. They keep referring to their age. Instead of living now, they seem to think that life has already happened.
- Other people just get boring. These people are no fun to be around. They stop learning and growing. Their mental, emotional, and spiritual clocks stop. The only clock that seems to be ticking is their physical one.
Do you know why I am glad to be my age and alive? It is because I know life doesn’t have to turn out like the previous descriptions. A person can be fully alive at any age. I’ve seen 70-year-olds who are full of life and passion while I’ve seen 40-year-olds who are beginning to shut down. Please don’t misunderstand. I don’t have this all figured out. I’ve never done this before. I’m just trying to learn. But I think that’s okay.
God did not create a human being to live for a few years and then settle for mere existence. I want to remain fully alive all my life. For me, that is more than just an attitude. It reflects my appreciation for what God is doing in my life right now and will continue to do in the future. Like you, I have no idea what that future might look like. Rather than sit around and wait for my clock to stop ticking, I think I would prefer to stay fully alive.