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IS THERE LIFE AFTER RETIREMENT? ...DEVOTIONS

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IS THERE LIFE AFTER RETIREMENT? ...DEVOTIONS

Post by Harry on Mon Jun 08, 2015 10:46 am

Is There Life After Retirement?

April 23, 2015 (English)

Dr. Harold J. Sala

Series: The Guidelines Commentary


The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the LORD tests the heart. Proverbs 17:3

My son says that there are three periods of life: youth, middle age, and "My, you're looking well today!" We smile, but the humor only points out a sobering reality: We hate to admit it when old age begins to creep up on our blind side, but, then, why should we fight it? Why not flow with it and accept it gracefully as a beautiful part of life itself?

The tranquility of retirement years is threatened by five enemies that lurk outside the gates. Let's look at them. Undoubtedly, the number one enemy is that of loneliness, especially for those who have lost a mate and whose children are grown and gone, often many, many miles away. They are the army of neglected mothers and fathers (but mostly mothers), who make their way to the mail box day after day looking for a card or a letter only to find their box stuffed with junk mail and advertising. They are the ones who wait by the phone, especially on birthdays and anniversaries, who dust the vast array of photos and memorabilia, who delight in knowing what's happening in the lives of their children and grandchildren, but who often are disappointed.

Letters from you, senior citizens, tell me that the greatest single problem that confronts you is the monster of loneliness. Many of you fight back by getting involved in your church, or establishing a friendship with others like yourself who are without a close family, or adopting a family and forging a relationship with them. The worst possible thing you can do is to barricade yourself in your home or room and worry about what will happen to you.

The second greatest enemy is a feeling of worthlessness, especially for you men who have been extremely involved prior to your retirement. Frankly, I don't believe in retirement. It's an economic concept without spiritual or biblical foundation. When God calls a man to serve Him, that call never ends until He calls him home. True, you may need to readjust your pace or even give up certain responsibilities. Scripture says that we are to bear the yoke in our youth but not to turn loose of the plow. It is this feeling that you have had it, that you are a 5th wheel, that contributes to the loss of vitality and desire to go on living.

The average male dies within 3 to 7 years of retirement. After a man has played golf, cleaned the garage, polished his car, and fished a little, or done whatever he does for recreation, he often sits down and loses the drive that keeps him alert and alive. The tragedy of mental unemployment is that there are so many things which need a level, mature head and hand that go undone because of the fact that retired men seem to feel unneeded.

Enemy number three is depression, and it takes more than its fair share of victims. Persons over age 50 constitute approximately 25% of the population, yet 39% of the number of deaths by suicide are by those over age 50. Depression and feeling that life is out of control play a part in this sad loss of life.

Enemy number four is insufficient funds, and the problem isn't slacked by the economy today and the fact that people live longer. It isn't uncommon at all for someone who has been reasonably successful to begin to panic, wondering if the retirement fund that seemed to be so adequate is going to run out, and the result is to tighten the purse strings.

A fifth enemy which has to be faced is failing health. As Wilbur Smith put it shortly before he died, "It's no sin to be old, but it sure is mighty inconvenient."

A final question: Is there a way to fight back? Indeed there is.

Resource reading: Deuteronomy 34:1-8.

Harry
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