Have you ever noticed how that in American culture the elderly often seem forgotten? Indeed, we have a culture that seems to worship youthfulness to our own loss and detriment. But, the truth is, the elderly have much wisdom and experience to offer those of us who are younger. Today’s challenge in my series on Ten Ways to Demonstrate His Heart, My Hands is this: “Take time for the elderly.”
Leviticus 19:32 (ESV) says, “You shall stand up before the gray head and honor the face of an old man, and you shall fear your God: I am the LORD.”
Proverbs 16:31 exclaims, “Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.”
Proverbs 20:29 states, “The glory of young men is their strength, but the splendor of old men is their gray hair.”
1 Timothy 5:1-2 says, “Do not rebuke an older man but encourage him as you would a father . . . older women as mothers.”
The elderly are deserving of our respect, attention and time. Many times they are abandoned and ignored by family members after being placed in a nursing home. Elderly persons typically enjoy visiting with those from younger generations. They like to tell stories about their own youth, upbringing, and reminisce regarding their rich, and often colorful, life experiences.
All it takes on our part is the willingness to make some time for the elderly and lend a listening ear. Seek out opportunities to visit with elderly persons from your community, congregation, and extended family. This is just one more way to demonstrate Christ’s heart and be his hands in this world. And, remember, we reap what we sow! If we wish to be visited one day when we are old, frail, and lonely, we need to be proactive in visiting the elderly ourselves now!