I was having a light moment with my teenage daughter, Rachel few minutes ago. I said Grand-Auntie lived to 90 years old. If I would be living to 90, it would be another long 40 over years! I ended with, “How Dreadful.”
Rachel was bewildered by my ending statement. She said,
“You are aging gracefully. Even if you are 90, you would still look great. You are, in fact, better looking now than you were in your wedding photographs. You are just radiant now, mummy.”
That made my day, really. My children live up to my famous lines –
If you have nothing good to say, don’t say anything.
Well, I know it’s “vanity” for me to feel good having heard what my daughter has to say about her mummy. That was my wedding day, I was supposed to be at my best, and morever, it was 20 years ago. No one is supposed to be better looking than her wedding day and after 20 years ago.
But, Rachel has been nice.
We all grow old and die. The clouds cover the sun, darkness sets in, our bodies deteriorate and we die. Let’s see the wisest man, King Solomon said about aging process in the book of Ecclesiastes. Solomon is old and failing.
Remember also your Creator in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near when you will say, “I have no delight in them”; before the sun, the light, the moon, and the stars are darkened, and clouds return after the rain; in the day that the watchmen of the house tremble, and mighty men stoop, the grinding ones stand idle because they are few, and those who look through the windows grow dim; and the doors on the street are shut as the sound of the grinding mill is low, and one will arise at the sound of the bird, and the daughters of song will sing softly.
Furthermore, men are afraid of a high place and of terrors on the road; the almond tree blossoms. the grasshopper drags himself along, and the caperberry is ineffective. For man goes to his eternal home while mourners go about in the street. Remember him before the silver cord is broken and the golden bowl is crushed, the pitcher by the well is shattered and the wheel at the cistern is crushed; then the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the Spirit will return to God who gave it. (Ecclesiastes 12:1-7)
Solomon uses many metaphors to describe an old person’s body as well as the aging process: the clouds and the heavens, a great estate whose building is dilapidated and whose staff are old and weary, a lamp, a well, the insect world, etc. All of these metaphors testify to the certainty of growing old and losing one’s faculties.
A songwriter also observes the aging process in a song,
I ain’t gonna need this house no longer,
I ain’t gonna need this house no more.
Ain’t got time to fix the shingles,
Ain’t got time to fix the floor.
Ain’t got time to oil the hinges
Or fix a broken window pane.
Ain’t gonna need this house no longer,
I’m gittin’ ready to meet the saints.
But, today, Rachel has also given me the word, Radiant. I like the word. Only an intimate relationship with the Lord causes a person to be radiant, to reflect His glory and to be like Him.
Yes, we may grow old, our bodies deteriorate, but we can radiant with the Lord!