My sister told me that I am not old this week! She also told me that I need to quit thinking of myself as old. Well, Cheree, when you’ve been married forty-five years, have thirteen grandchildren and are six months away from being eligible for Medicare—you’re no spring chicken! And this old hen has lost the spring in her step—and a whole lot of other things, too!
But bless her heart, Cheree was giving me a pep talk, encouraging me to pick up the pace, get in a more “youthful” frame of mind, and get ready to keep up with all those grandchildren when they come home this summer. I needed her encouragement, too, because I have become much too used to my quiet (read lazy!) lifestyle, and allowed myself to play the old card—on myself! And she is correct—being older in years does not mean we have to be older in outlook. As the old saying goes, “You’re only as old as you feel.”
So thanks to Cheree I have resolved to start working on how I feel, but oooh—I feel every one of those aches and pains! And I can’t see worth a hoot; sometimes I think I can’t hear, either; I wobble when I walk; and I lose my car in the parking lot after spending twenty minutes in the store. To top things off, Bob put a grab bar in my tub/shower this week because he worries that I will fall. I am thankful for his protection and care, but yeah—it made me feel very senior citizen-ish.
And to top that, we hit a milestone this week. We started the process of signing up for Medicare and decided on the supplements we will take out to cover what Medicare does not. Bob turns sixty-five in just a couple weeks, and I will follow later this year. Actually, strangely enough, turning sixty-five and being eligible for Medicare is something I have looked forward to for a long time since we have not had health insurance for the last eight or nine years. At last I can start getting some of the things fixed on this no-spring-chicken body that need to be fixed! And God has graciously answered my prayers, so far, that nothing catastrophic would happen to saddle us with monstrous medical bills before Medicare kicks in, for which I am very grateful.
I have often said that in this day and age, if you don’t have health insurance you might as well live in the 1800’s as far as medical care is concerned. We have amazing science and technology and pharmaceutics available, but who can afford the astronomic costs on their own? So yes, I will be delighted to receive Medicare. It is good to remember, however, that our lives and our needs on up into our senior years, are in the omnipotent, loving hands of God.
Our security does not come from Social Security. We cannot put our trust in dividends or retirement funds for our provision. Our physical health is ultimately in God’s hands whether we have insurance or Meidcare or not. He does not forget us when we get old. In fact He says that the lives of His children, from youth to old age, are in His watchcare. “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. He is ever merciful, and lendeth; and his seed is blessed. Depart from evil, and do good; and dwell for evermore. For the Lord loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off. The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein forever. (Psalm 37:23-29)
Yes, we face new and often more difficult challenges as we age, but God is faithful and walks with us through every ordered step of our life’s journey. He will not forsake us, even when we might feel alone or sick or feeble. “…for He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” (Hebrews 13:5) He, not the government, is our refuge in times of trouble. “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1) What a blessing and comfort to turn to the God of the universe in times of calamity and know that He loves us and holds us close! “Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.” (Psalm 57:1)
Putting our trust in God for our anxieties about getting old frees our minds to be at peace. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.” (Philippians 4:6-8) When I am not thinking about how old I’m getting and all the aches and pains and other difficulties that come with it, I can “think young” again and go on to enjoy life.
I appreciate Cheree’s encouragement and support. I love having a husband who is young at heart (and young in physical fitness, too!) who keeps me giggling like a school girl and wants to keep me young at heart, too. And I am thankful for my loving Father who has it all under control and will see me through the rest of my life’s journey. I may not be a spring chicken—but I’m still kickin’!