As I was working with a gentleman in his 80s he said, “The days are long but the weeks are short.” Aw the truth to this statement. I am turning 32 this week and already feel how quickly time goes which I am sure pales in understanding of this man with many years, adventures, and life beyond mine. As I have gotten to know this man the last six months that statement wasn’t just a statement. There was something in his eyes and heart that spoke deeper. “How did I get here?” Here, a place of dependence, functional loss, inability to do menial tasks, in a body that just sits waiting for the long day to pass just to do the same thing again tomorrow.
As I sat across from this man seeing the state he is currently in I couldn’t help but reflect as he was. Once young now old, once handsome now wrinkly and gray, once brilliant now struggling to remember, once growing now wasting away, once a husband and father who provided for his family now unable to even care for himself, once able to walk now bound to a chair. Have you stopped to consider life? Nothing new is under the sun. “A generation goes, and a generation comes” (Ecc. 1:1-11). Will you learn from those who’ve gone before you?
My career has been a great gift to me because of the people I have the privilege of working with and the perspective each day brings. I must admit, and my roommates back in 2016 can attest that when I started working as a PT my attitude was awful. I saw my job, as a job rather than a blessing. My heart needed a good checking and repenting and still sometimes does, but I am happy to say by the grace of God He allows me to view each day as a day given by Him (Rom. 11:33-36). This changes everything.
Life is more than meets the eye and only one can satisfy (Ps. 16:5-11). You don’t take riches, adventures, or material treasures with you to the grave. And if you’re blessed to age physical youth doesn’t come with you, but rather a frail body creeps in to remind you of the years that have passed. All my patients can attest to this. So, what is important in life? What joy does aging bring? Relationships, relationships, relationships. God designed man for relationships and growing in your relationship with Christ is the wisest use of your time (Eph. 5:15-17, Micah 6:8, 1 Thess. 5:16-18). Life is fast, don’t waste the days (Ecc. 3).
Hard conversations and circumstances arise everyday in my field of work. My heart aches for my patients not just because of the ailments they are enduring, but even greater the nonexistent or lacking relationship they have with Christ. I see how rich I am in the Lord. No matter my circumstances my richness remains because it is found in Christ. This is what I desire for my patients above any physical cure, to know Christ because He is everything. All the questions one has Christ has the answers (Eph. 3:14-21).
I pray you don’t turn 80 looking back seeing all that the world offered you which you partook of only to realize it was worth nothing compared to a relationship with Christ. Don’t wait another day. Jesus is enough, God is sovereign. If you have Him, you have all you need. “The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want (Ps. 23:1).
As you go about your day consider how you use your time. Soon that face you see in the mirror won’t be what you once knew and you too may be asking “How did I get here?” Make here a place rich in Christ. “So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (2 Cor. 4:16-18).