Modern American society tends to value youth more than the elderly. We see dyes to hide gray hair, facelifts to remove wrinkles, plastic surgery to remove face lines, exercises to keep facial skin taut, anti-aging creams, clothing choices to look younger, and constant searches for the fountain of youth. But is growing old really that bad?
We read in the book of Proverbs that youths have strength and beauty, but we are also told that there is wisdom and honor for the aged. Are we trying to reinvent God’s order so that in our own worldly wisdom we can remain youthful when our bodies begin to age? If so, we have it all wrong.
The Bible tells us that we are growing old whether we like it or not, but reminds us of what is more important—developing the inward person. Remember, God looks on the inward person not the outward for beauty. More precious in God’s eyes is that we are adorned with righteousness and walk in wisdom. The Bible tells us growing old is beautiful when it is associated with one who is wise.
Elderly people have so much to share from their life experiences, especially elderly Christians who can understand their life with the mind of Christ. Somehow, we have this idea that having gray hair, age spots, wrinkles, and looser skin from aging are a drawback, a flaw, a negative point. However, elderly folk do not need to feel ashamed of these things.
But sadly, seniors are often neglected in churches and society, many sit in retirement homes, so they degrade and deteriorate mentally, physically, and spiritually. Instead of being useful in providing wisdom to the younger people as God has ordained, they are kept from it. Let’s learn to appreciate the older people around us and learn to accept aging with grace as a blessing from God not to be ashamed of.