Aging, But Ageless

Note: I’m continuing to re-create posts from The Lost Gazette Chronicles, focusing on those that fall into the “Faith” category. This one requires a bit more explanation, because it refers to some things that some of you may not be familiar with, such as one of my previous professions. Also, please don’t try to do the math regarding my current age, as I wrote this in May, 2007, and I wouldn’t want you to hurt your brain.

Next month, God willing, I’ll achieve a certain age-related milestone, one that’s traditionally used in our society to signify what might politely be called “the beginning of the downhill slide.” From a practical perspective, the only immediate impact I anticipate is the savings of a buck-and-a-quarter at the movies, which is nothing to sneeze at, by the way.

Still, when I contemplate 55, the overriding reaction is, “I’m not old enough to be that old!” I surely don’t feel that old. In fact, I don’t feel any different than I did at other “milestone” ages, dating back just about as far as I can remember.

A few Sundays back, our Bible study was in the first chapter of 2 Peter, which includes a passage (verses 12-15) where Peter tells his readers about the importance of remembering his teachings after he was gone:

So I will always remind you of these things, even though you know them and are firmly established in the truth you now have. I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Jesus Christ has made clear to me. And I will make every effort to see that after my departure you will always be able to remember these things.

The teacher paused and said something to the effect that Peter’s comment about “living in the tent of this body” was a reminder that we’re not purely–or even primarily–physical beings. She then threw out this tantalizing tidbit. “I think that’s why we never really view ourselves as being as old as others think we are, or as old as our ages tell us we are.” What she was saying is that in our minds and spirits, we’re, well, ageless, because that’s the part of us that will survive for eternity, long after this body has broken down and returned to dust. Our spirit recognizes this eternal truth, and while we may at times be able to subvert it with emotion and thought, that truth doesn’t change.

Thus it’s a gift from God to us, to see ourselves as an ageless being, regardless of what we see in the mirror, and regardless of what our inevitably decaying bodies try to tell us.

So, youngsters, the next time some old guy–say, an aging web designer (who might still be able to kick your rear on a bike, but that’s neither here nor there)–throws out that seemingly lame declaration that he’s not as old as he is, keep in mind that it’s the truth. And it applies to you, too.

Categorized as Faith