As a Christian who is now in Act III of the play that is his life, I find myself recalling some of the many highlights of my almost 50-year walk with God. Scenes, if you will, from Acts I and II.
Two recent events have shown me that I’m not the only aging Christian buoyed by “precious memories” as the hymn has it.
The first event occurred a few weeks ago when Bev and I attended a birthday party for another aging Boomer who also recalls the early years of her walk with Christ and how glorious they were. At her party, we sang songs only Boomer Christians will remember. For example: “Pass It On,” and “He’s Everything to Me” (see video below and sing along…if you remember). Every song we sang took me back to those early years and the joys I’ve known through the decades. (Odd that we didn’t sing “Kumbayah” 🙂 ).
Then just the other night I was with a friend who remarked that he has now been a Christian for more than forty years. He had come to Christ from a life of “sex, drugs, and rock ’n roll” back in the early 1970s. He told me lately he too has been recalling with joy the memories of his four decades in Christ.
Yes, there have been sorrows as well as joys. For me, it was bankruptcy, cancer, two or three bad church experiences, plus the normal struggle with sin we all have. Ups and downs, for sure. But in spite of those occasional sorrows, what a life I’m living! (More than once I’ve caught myself saying “What a life I’ve had!” as if it was over. It’s not. More memories to come in Act III).
My thoughts turned next to Christians who, for whatever reason, don’t enjoy happy memories from the past. I’ve been thinking particularly of Boomers who perhaps came to Christ during the Jesus Movement, but have since cashed in their Christianity chips, abandoned the faith, and now are no longer able to trace the workings of God through life’s events.
I’ve also been thinking about twenty- and thirty-somethings who were raised as Christians, but somewhere along the way ditched their faith entirely or perhaps just put it on the backburner of their life while they “enjoy” the world for a while. What can I tell them? How can I convince them that the most precious memories they will recall in old age will be memories of how God worked in their life down through the decades? How can I tell them some of my most regrettable memories are those that recall the days when I almost walked away from the life God had for me?
Whatever your age now, I hope you see the hand of God working in your life each day and that occasionally you recall those steps cumulatively, seeing God’s design for your life as He meant it to be. Even if you’re in Act III yourself, there’s still time for the play to have a happy ending. Still time for God to create precious memories for you.
Here then is one of life’s greatest lessons: You cannot plan a better life for yourself than the life God wants to give you. Live that life.