Philemon 1:9b – Consider this as a request from me — Paul, an old man and now also a prisoner for the sake of Christ Jesus. (NLT)
2 Timothy 4:6 – As for me, my life has already been poured out as an offering to God. The time of my death is near. (NLT)
Sometimes, I find myself thinking that God has no more for me to do, as I am old. Then, I remember that the apostle Paul said that he was old, too, a vulnerable thing to admit. But lately, when people ask how I am, I say, "Elderly", because it acknowledges so much — complaints, neediness, aches, and pains — and they laugh, especially if they are doctors, used to hearing the litany of problems related to aging.
Paul knew what his work was: writing a bunch of letters to a few small and scattered churches (when he wasn't getting beaten up and thrown into prison). Did Paul know that he was writing what would become a quarter of the New Testament? No, of course not. But he kept on doing what God had given him to do.
Someone said, "I'm in the efforts business, not the results business." This is the way that I have learned to regard the work that God has for me. Sometimes, I have trouble getting out of the house, forgetting my keys, my jacket, my umbrella. It slows me down when I have to go back. But starting again, I often bump into someone God wanted me to talk to. I would not have encountered them had God not been synchronizing our schedules.
Most of the time, like Paul, we don't know the impact of our words as we turn over our life and will to His direction every morning. However, occasionally, someone tells us that what we've said made a difference.
Hebrews 12:12-13 – So take a new grip with your tired hands and strengthen your weak knees. Mark out a straight path for your feet so that those who are weak and lame will not fall but become strong. (NLT)
Titus 2:2-3a – Teach the older men to exercise self-control, to be worthy of respect and to live wisely. They must have sound faith and be filled with love and patience. Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. (NLT)
Prayer: Dear patient heavenly Father, our times are in Your hands. Thank You for those who are prepared to share Your blessings and understanding, especially the example of the aged apostle, faithfully writing about his trust in You to those You had given him to help. Thank You that this faith still burns as brightly as it did when he set down the words that have grown us up in Christ, sustaining and changing our lives as we continue to read their wisdom. Thank You for the opportunity to share daily the insights that You give us, without knowing where or to whom or to what they will lead. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
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Listen while you read: "Thy Way Not Mine O Lord" (Lyrics)