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NIV is used unless otherwise noted.

Facing Life’s Trials: Age-related Problems

“Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith. And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.” Luke 12:27-31 (NIV)

Growing old can be a scary thing.  There are so many problems that can happen that we grow afraid to look too far into the future. My daughter-in-law’s father had a stroke eight years ago that left him paralyzed.  It is a frightening state to all the family.  They are coping day by day, trusting God to see them through it.

Another friend’s husband recently had the same kind of stroke leaving her to take care of his business, trying to make arrangements for settling all kinds of business problems that she was not prepared for.  She also is trusting the Lord to make it through each day. By prayer and encouragement from family, friends, and advisors she has hired, she is getting the necessary business cared for. She steps out in faith day by day.

My mom just had her 90th birthday.  She has been a widow for several years now.  Since my dad died, she has had to move into an assisted living facility, selling her home and most of her possessions, because she fell and broke her wrist and could not live alone any more.  More recently she fell and broke her ankle which required surgery and a long period of skilled nursing care and rehab, so she is now in a nursing home.  This has required more changes and adjustments on her part. She sometimes questions God, but then has faith that He is with her wherever she is and also has a plan for her life until the end. She actively witnesses to the workers who care for her, other patients, and visitors. She plays the piano for worship services again, and basically does what she has done her whole life.  A lifetime of serving God was good preparation for trusting Him through whatever comes her way and making the best of it. (Most of the time).

My former pastor, who is also my friend, has developed many health problems.  He is now 80 years old and is still going strong, preaching in Cowboy churches, filling in for preacher friends, and conducting lots of funerals.  He has given up golf, but not doing the Lord’s work.  He says as long as he can get out of bed and stand he will continue preaching. I suspect if there were any way, he would delight in preaching his own funeral someday!  His preaching continues to bless so many each time they hear him. I believe I have heard him say that Christians should wear out; not rust out!  If he did not say it, that is the message he proclaims! The problems are many: loneliness, dementia, fragile bones, weak muscles, cancer, poverty, and all kinds of health problems. 

Thank you God that you never leave us or forsake us. Hallelujah!!

Pat Eppler                                                                  

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