While elk hunting this past week, I became acutely aware of my limitations. From the miles of hiking to the possibility of carrying out heavy loads of meat deep in the mountains, my slipping strength became a reality. I am getting older.
This was the first time it hit me so hard. I’m losing the battle of physical strength and vitality. Looking out over the snowcapped peaks of the Flat Tops Wilderness at 10,000 feet, I struggled with my conflicted views. One was my energetic, take the mountain, “all things are possible” side of my heart; the other, more realistic, more grounded mindset—I’m getting older and my body is changing.
While sitting beside a blazing campfire, God led me to Psalm 39,
“My heart grew hot within me.
While I meditated, the fire burned;
then I spoke with my tongue:
‘Show me, Lord, my life’s end
and the number of my days;
let me know how fleeting my life is.'”
I wonder if David felt similar emotions when he penned these words. It’s like he still has this fire within him (verse 3), but he realizes that he needs to have a strategy for his life, even as he is growing older (verse 4). Whether this was his thinking or not, the whole Psalm spoke to me. I must “number my days.”
I can’t do anything about growing older. But I can determine how I will grow older. As I’ve thought about it, and let me tell you, it’s all I’ve thought about for the past few days, I am not going to think any more about growing older, but rather growing wilder!
I have decided. I want the remaining years of my life to be more wild, more adventurous, and more faith-filled than any of the years before! I want to diligently work to build a great community in our county, city, and church. I want to live wilder in love with Jesus than in previous decades. With God’s power, I want to fall more in love with Liz and my kids!
I want to live life to the fullest in the power of the Holy Spirit and to leave this earth a better place having been here.