“And when forty years were expired, there appeared to him in the wilderness of Mount Sinai an angel of the Lord in a flame of fire in a bush… saying… I have seen the affliction of my people which is in Egypt, and I have heard their groaning, and am come down to deliver them. And now come, I will send thee into Egypt.” (Acts 7:30-34)
That was a long wait in preparation for a great mission. When God delays, He is not inactive. He is getting ready His instruments, He is ripening our powers; and at the Appointed moment we shall arise equal to our task. Even Jesus of Nazareth was thirty years in privacy, growing in wisdom before He began His work.
God is never in a hurry but spends years with those He expects to greatly use. He never thinks the days of preparation too long or too dull. (Streams in the Desert)
Good memories are blessings unless they are all you have to celebrate. The hardest part of aging is fearing our best is behind us. If we aren’t vigilant, we slide into silent despair. Each day becomes a cross to bear, not a banner to hoist and rally under. The greatest enemy we face in our senior years is resignation. Life is what it is; it will never improve, we only hope it doesn’t get worse. Many seniors I know, including myself, would make good Hindus. We dutifully fulfill our dharma—our duty—all the while longing for delight. “It is the dull, bald, dreary, commonplace day, with commonplace duties and people, that kills the burning heart unless we have learned the secret of abiding in Jesus” (Chambers).
In the doldrums it helps to consider Caleb, who at the tender age of 85 demanded, “Give me this mountain!”
“And now, behold, the LORD hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years, even since the LORD spake this word unto Moses, while the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness: and now, lo, I am this day fourscore and five years old. As yet I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me: as my strength was then, even so is my strength now, for war, both to go out, and to come in. Now therefore give me this mountain, whereof the LORD spake in that day; for thou heardest in that day how the Anakims were there, and that the cities were great and fenced: if so be the LORD will be with me, then I shall be able to drive them out, as the LORD said.” (Joshua 14:10-12 | KJV)
Are there no more mountains to scale, no rivers to explore? Are there no lives to impact with the gospel, no one to save from the fires of hell? Are there no friends to mentor, no hurting to serve? Is there no Creator to worship, no Savior to know? The Father has not abandoned or forgotten you dear friend. He is patiently forging a trophy of grace. Lift up your chin and set your eyes upon the horizon. The glory of this life does not fade until exchanged for the grandeur of eternity. Love, laugh, serve, worship—above all, do not lose heart.