August 31, 2007

A Good Reason to Get Older

Psalm 71:14-24

I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come. Psalm 71:18


The other day I met someone I used to work with in my former career at the bank; I hadn’t seen him for 13 years. That’s not a very long span of time—but his once-blond hair had changed almost completely to a peppery gray. I’m sure he also noticed that my own hair is thinning out too fast to have a chance to change color; I also need bifocal lenses to read medium-size print.

We do not know the age of the author of Psalm 71, but we do know he was feeling the effects of aging. Perhaps health problems or loss of physical strength were part of the troubles he mentions.

This psalm also hints that there were people around him who took advantage of his struggles, even to the point of threatening to bring harm against him. He was tempted to feel that his life was nothing but trouble and bitterness, that there was no meaning to his existence.

But God’s inspiring power gives new vigor to this believer, even though he sees himself as growing “old and gray.” The psalmist rediscovers a sense of purpose for his life—there are new generations coming that need to hear encouragement and testimony from the older generation. They need to hear how the saving, redeeming power of God never slows down, never fades, never gets old, but always renews, always restores, always remains with us to comfort us again.

<p>Mighty God of all ages, help us all to share the testimony of what you have done for us through every generation. May the young and old and all others praise your name. </p><p>Amen.</p>

About the author — Fred Bultman

Fred Bultman began a “second career” as a pastor in 1997, after a first career in the banking business.  He served as pastor to congregations in the U.S. and Canada. In retirement, he continues to enjoy sharing in the ministry of the churches in and around his home in Fremont, Michigan.

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