by Gloria Copeland
Today, the idea of aging gracefully seems lost. In our society, emphasis is repeatedly placed on remaining young, but if you are entering your “golden years,” you know the value of growing older. You hold the unique position of being able to train the next generation of believers to love, endure, worship and encourage.
You have the opportunity to reflect the heart of the psalmist who said, “Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God. Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me” (Psalm 71:18).
Yes, the Body of Christ needs you. Here are six lessons you are uniquely qualified to share with the younger generation.
- Help the next generation see that living a lifetime of godliness is possible.
Titus 2:11-13 says, “For the grace of God has been revealed, bringing salvation to all people. And we are instructed to turn from godless living and sinful pleasures. We should live in this evil world with wisdom, righteousness, and devotion to God, while we look forward with hope to that wonderful day when the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, will be revealed.”
You’ve learned that godly living is the only way to truly live. It’s not something you outgrow or reason away. You know what it means to serve the Lord in every area of life and you have experienced the joy that comes with making and living that choice.
- Help the next generation see what godly endurance looks like.
“Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised” (Hebrews 10:36).
You’ve learned over time how to live the life of faith regardless of what comes against you. You’ve learned how to endure hardship, persecutions and disappointments. While a younger believer may question how to get through tough times, you have a lifetime of knowing that God is ever faithful.
- Help the next generation see what it is to passionately pursue the Lord.
“‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Luke 10:27).
For the younger generation, it’s easy to get caught up in the cares of life—establishing a career, finding a spouse, caring for a young family, sending a teenager off to college, paying for college, and maneuvering job changes. As someone who has already experienced those life changes, you are able to show them what it looks like to serve God faithfully and passionately over the long haul.
- Help the next generation keep its eyes on Jesus.
While it’s easy to get caught up in new trends that pass through the Church, you can help the next generation remember to keep their eyes fixed on Jesus. You can remind them that He is “the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through [Him]” (John 14:6).
- Help the next generation understand the importance of the Word of God.
Joshua 1:8 tells us to “study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.” There is no substitute for studying the Word. It is the best way to learn God’s ways and understand His nature. After years of study, you are able to teach the next generation what it says and how to apply it.
- Help the next generation see how precious Christian fellowship is.
“If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble” (Ecclesiastes 4:10). You can help the next generation see just how important and beneficial godly friendships are. As believers we’re not called to walk through life alone. Instead, we’re called to be part of a body of believers, like KCM’s Partner churches.
If you are entering your golden years, the Body of Christ needs you! You have a lifetime of wisdom and experiences to impart. From younger men and women in your local church to those in your community who would love to know you and learn from you, you have much to give and a multitude to share.
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