You are Growing Older but ARE YOU Getting Better! Pt 1
What are the marks of getting better? Psalm 37
Intro: The growing older part you may not have control over but the getting better part you do have control over!
David wrote this psalm when he was a senior adult.
One of the largest retirement villages in world all around us.
“The fields are white unto harvest” literally with white hair.
WE are going to start a new singing group called the “the retirement village people” with a new song.
Retirement may mean you slow down or you don’t work like you use to but it is never to imply that you quit. Being a Xn and a minister is my life calling. I will never retire from my calling until heaven.
Could it be that all your life has been preparation for your best life now?
Jesus spent 30 years in obscurity and daily work for 3 years of ministry? God did not consider those wasted years.
Ill. Talking to youth minister Miguel about retired people moving all around the church. We always want young families and youth and children! One gold mine is all the retired people around us.
They have time, money, experience. I would like to see a mentoring program of retired people connected to young people teaching a vast variety of subjects, musical instruments, how to subjects.
So many retired people in the villages are living empty wasted lives and will end up sad, depressed, or even suicidal while living what their dream of what they worked for all their lives and found it empty.
The average household net worth in Villages is 364,291. Another source reports this to be 2.3 million.
- All the golf, dancing, eating and drinking all you want = zero.
Recently heard of a survey from Yale that said, people that you would think are set for life in money, two homes, retire young, are some of the unhappiest people in the world!
75% of the people who have won the lottery would say they are unhappy.
Same survey revealed the happiest people in the world are people who live life facing outward instead of inward. In other words, they have found happiness by taking time to help others in some way. Whether it is in volunteering, mentoring, helping the less fortunate, ministering in some way – this is the secret to happiness no one expected.
What kind of older person do you want to be?
You can be better or bitter but you can’t be both!
This psalm 37 is one of my favorites because it is written by a senior adult David who has a wealth of life experience he is offering us here.
One of the first things that should mark an older more mature person who has had a lot of life experience is a sense of calm.
They have weathered many life storms and they have learned not to hit the panic button every time something unexpected happens. One of the characteristics of getting older but better is a possessing a sense of calm when adversity happens.
“Fret not yourself because of evil doers, neither be envious against the workers of iniquity.” Vs 1
“Be still and rest in the Lord. . . fret not yourself because of the man who brings wicked devices to pass. Cease from anger and forsake wrath . . . ” Psa. 37:7-8 Ampl.
An older and wiser King David is talking to us like a father. “Be calm. Don’t get yourself in a huff over anything. Relax – be patient.”
Isn’t retirement about finally slowing down! Just don’t go slow in the fast lane because it causes some people road rage. I am not going to say names but her initials are Pam Washburn!
My mom and Dad’s parents were from hills of Tennessee and very country. People use to sit on front porch and talk or make music. I remember listening to their conversations because of their strong southern hillbilly accents I heard words I did not know like this.
“Last week we bur- reed your second cousin.
Burr-ree in the Southern Dictionary means bury.
Burr-reed = buried. For example:
“Last week we burr-reed your second cousin.”
Then I would hear the dumbest question ever from the other person. “Did he die?”
I was thinking maybe one day the other person might answer and say, “No he didn’t die, but we got tired of waiting!”
Hurry + Worry = an Rx for BuRRy
Hurry is a soul that has un-yoked with Jesus.
Worry is a soul that has un-yoked with Jesus.
Fretting is a soul that has un-yoked with Jesus.
BUSY = Bound Under Satan’s Yoke
As we get older in the Lord we become more patient and calm in adversity. WHY?
Because we have had a longer love walk with Jesus than younger people! After 41 years of a love walk with God I should have learned that I may not be able to trust me because I am not always faithful but He remains faithful even when I am not.
“Trust in the Lord and do good, so shalt you dwell in the land and FEED ON HIS FAITHFULNESS . . .” Psalm 37:3 Ampl.
How? Yoked with Him Who is called LOVE. People who truly walk with God are patient people. Patient with God, patient with themselves, and patient with others. How do I know this?
- I Cor. 13 chapter is a list what love is and how it acts. The 1st characteristic of love IS –
“Love is PATIENT and KIND . . .” I Cor. 13:4
Patience is learned by life experience WITH GOD. Have you learned
Patience? “Let patience have her perfecting, maturing work in you, so you may be fully developed, with no defects, lacking nothing.” Ja.1:4 Ampl.
Pic of kitty and dog: Good to have friends teach you.
Everyone needs friends who will be truthful to them. If you can’t sing and you think you can – you need a real friend!
Pic of man praying for patience:
Pic of dog with dog biscuit on nose:
Patience is about slowing yourself down in the inside, and trusting God has ordained your steps on the outside, to be in the right place at the right time.
When you slow down you see things other people do not see.
Ill.Paraphrase Luke 10: 30-37. Priest, Levite, Samaritan. Two religious guys and a man no one expected anything good from walk past a divine appointment God placed right in front of them.
“Go and do likewise.”
(You can’t “go and do likewise” and be in a hurry!)
The context of this parable of Jesus comes from a lawyer asking Jesus an important question:
What am I to do to have (Eternal Life) the life, (the plans) that God wants me to live?
Jesus’ answer is Love God with all you have and then your neighbor. Then He tells a parable we all know but most of us have yet to hear God talking to us through this parable: So pay attention!
3 men looking for God’s plans and purposes for their life:
1. They all walk the same path or road.
2. They all see the same things.
3. Two of them do what most people do because they are in a hurry.
4. Only one stops to consider what God has placed in his path.
Priest – maybe he became a priest thinking this how God will show me purpose and meaning for my life = found empty.
Levite – If I stay in the service of the church = empty.
Both of these men think this is an interruption to God’ great plans for my life so I must keep on going to get there!
Samaritan = God has ordained my steps. He puts people in my path for a reason. I will stop and consider what God wants to do with me concerning this need.
Jesus taught us to find our real life by losing it.
The first two guys see this real need but they consider it an interruption to their lives and ignore it and keep moving on with their agenda.
“My whole life I have been complaining that my work was constantly interrupted, until I discovered THE INTERRUPTIONS WERE MY WORK.”
Are we missing the work of God because we are in a hurry to do other things that God has not told us to do? Hurry can be a sickness!
Having God in our life should make us distinctively different and noticed by the hectic pace the world is trying to keep up with.
I want my grandchildren to learn from me. I want them to notice that Papa has a calm about him that I want to have.
When they ask me how I do it then I can say I have learned to “feed on God’s faithfulness and this makes me calm inside no matter what is going on the outside.
Some scriptures I have been meditating on:
“ Blessed is the man whom You discipline and instruct, O Lord, and teach out of Your Word, that You may give him power to keep himself CALM in the days of adversity . . .” Psalm 94:12-13
Have you received His power to keep yourself calm in the days of adversity?
“A CALM and undisturbed mind and heart are the life and health of the body, but envy, jealousy and wrath are rottenness of the bones.”
The best exercise for your body is to have a calm and undisturbed mind and heart. Do you have this?
“Surely I have CALMED and quieted my soul like a weaned child with his mother, like a weaned child is my soul within me [ceased from fretting].” Psalm 131
“As for you, be CALM and COOL and STEADY, accept and suffer unflinchingly every hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fully perform all the duties of your ministry.” 2 Tim. 4:5
The calmest, coolest and steady people on earth to be admired should be those who have walked the love walk with God for a long time and found He is faithful and true.
These particular people are “getting older but they are also getting better.”
As wine ages it gets better, sweeter. Are you? You may have moved here to retire. God places a question to you today.
Retire or Re-fire? What will it be?
Your ending is more important than your beginning! Finish Well!
You are Growing Older but Are You Getting Better?
Concl: You can but you must be intentional. You don’t coast into this kind of life. You present yourself to God today as a Living Sacrifice.
I will continue more on this subject of getting older but getting better next week. So bring someone with you who needs to hear this.