Dear Younger Me
“Older men are to be level headed, worthy of respect, sensible, and sound in faith, love, and endurance.” “In the same way, encourage the young men to be self-controlled in everything.”
– Titus 2:2,6
After retiring two years ago from the oil and gas industry, I’ve been asked several times, “What are you doing with all of your spare time?” In reality, I’m as busy now as when I was working. I found that retirement not only gave me the opportunity to travel and work on my golf game, but it also gave me time to get involved in ministries and serving God in ways I never had time for while working. It also gave me time to focus on things in life that are really important like being a better husband, brother, father, grandfather, and friend.
There’s a Christian song out called “Dear Younger Me” by MercyMe. The lyrics start by saying; “Dear younger me, where do I start, If I could tell you everything that I have learned so far, then you could be one step ahead, of all the painful memories, still running thru my head, I wonder how much different things would be, Dear younger me.” Retirement causes us to look back at our life and sometimes think, “What if I had made other choices, or what if I knew then what I know now, how different things would be?” Instead of looking at my past, I choose to look ahead and share my experiences with others so they don’t make the same mistakes.
Some of those life lessons God has taught me are:
- Start each day with prayer, prayer changes everything.
- You can’t out-give God, the sooner you start tithing the sooner He will keep His promise.
- Put God first in everything you do and He will bless you, protect you, and direct you.
- Today is the first day of the rest of your life, so forget the past and focus on your future.
- Don’t just aspire to make a living, aspire to make a difference.
- Strive not to be just an ordinary Christian, because we have an extraordinary Savior.
Psalms 22:6 says that if you “Train up a child in the way they should go that when they are old they will not depart from it.” I can’t go back and change my life or correct my mistakes, but what I can do is share my faith with my family, friends, and those strangers I come in contact with every day. Pastor Matt has been trying to get us focused on a word the last several weeks and it’s called discipleship!
Maybe it’s this crazy world that we are living in with the riots, protests, Covid-19, and political unrest, but I sense that we are approaching the end times written about in the book of Revelation. Maybe it’s the miracles I’ve seen God perform in my life, maybe it’s the prayers that God has answered over the years, or maybe it’s the peace I have in times of trouble that only comes from God. Whatever it is, I find myself, in retirement, being bolder in sharing my faith and having a stronger sense of urgency in telling others how God can change their life if they just trust Him. I can’t change my past, but I know God still can use me no matter what my age or work status. I can still make a difference for Him.
Lord, as I go into the 4th quarter of my life, help me not to look to my past, but to the future and Your will for me daily. Help me not to be satisfied with coasting into the finish line, but finishing strong by lifting and encouraging others. Give me the courage to point my family, friends, and strangers to You and Your greatness. God, I love You and want to be a warrior for You every day for the rest of my life.”
Deacon, Finance Committee and Choir Member
First Baptist Broken Arrow