O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to another generation, your power to all those to come.” Psalm 71:17-18
I once met a dear Christian lady in her late 80′s. She had married young, and she and her husband had been married for longer than most people on earth today have been alive. She had sent him off to World War II, and had prayed for him to come home.
She had devoted her life to loving and serving her husband to the glory of God, and indeed, she was still doing so–loving him and caring for him through old age and health troubles. She didn’t reflect the heavily-burdened spirit that one might expect from a life of self-sacrifice–her face radiated joy. When her husband looked at her, their eyes happily twinkled together, as though they were newlyweds.
She had raised a whole raft of kids, too. Eight of them, if I recall correctly. I came to realize quickly that one of my high school friends was her granddaughter–and that she had been blessed with an abundance of grandchildren and great-grandchildren. It seems as though you can hardly visit a Bible-believing church in the entire county without running into one of her progeny.
As I sat across the table from this dear old woman and her husband, listening to their stories, tears welled up in my eyes and I thought–that’s what I want to be when I am old.
Should my Heavenly Father see fit to bless me in such a way,
I want to be happily married to the same man for decades and decades…
I want to be surrounded by my children, and grandchildren, and great grandchildren…
And I want to be able to tell them of the wonderful, mighty God we serve, and of His faithfulness to His people.
Oh LORD, let my whole life–no matter how many days you have ordained–be controlled by Your Spirit and a reflection of the love that Christ has poured out on me. May I raise these little ones to Your Glory, that they may also teach their children to know, love, serve, and follow You. And if You should extend my life on this earth, may my gray-haired days be characterized by Your grace and Your joy. May I never neglect to tell of Your unceasing loving-kindness, and Your mercies that never come to an end. AMEN.
Here I raise my Ebenezer, hither by Thy help I’ve come
And I hope by Thy good pleasure safely to arrive at home.
Jesus sought me when a stranger wandering from the fold of God,
He to rescue me from danger interposed His precious blood.”
Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing
Robert Robinson, 1757