Counseling Life: Aging

What Is Aging?

Aging is a process of growing physically, mentally and emotionally in order to move toward maturity.

“Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature.” (James 1:4)

Maturity in the New Testament is translated from the Greek word teleios, which means “complete” or “growth in mental and moral character.”

“But solid food is for the mature.” (Hebrews 5:14)

God’s purpose in the process of aging is to bring you to spiritual maturity through deepening your faith and developing your awareness of and dependence on the abiding presence of Christ within you.

“Until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:13)

What Are the Seasons of Aging?

Springtime

“Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, ‘I find no pleasure in them.’ ”

(Ecclesiastes 12:1)

Approximate Age:

Young adults (ages 20–40)

Common Characteristics:

The years of seeking personal fulfillment

The peak years of health and energy

Measurement of Maturity:

Trust

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5)

Failure to Grow:

Reaps the inability to develop intimate relationships

Results in missing God-given opportunities in life

“The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature.” (Luke 8:14)

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.”

(Ecclesiastes 3:1)

Summer

Approximate Age:

Middle adults (ages 40–65)

Common Characteristics:

The years of investing time and effort helping others

The years of creativity and productivity

Measurement of Maturity:

Selflessness

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3)

Failure to Grow:

Reaps bondage, burnout and midlife crises

Results in undeveloped character

“He is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.” (James 1:8)

“Stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.”

(Colossians 4:12)

Autumn

Approximate Age:

Senior adults (ages 65–80)

Common Characteristics:

The years of turning over leadership and control to others

The years of physical decline

Measurement of Maturity:

Acceptance

“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” (Philippians 4:11)

Failure to Grow:

Reaps rejection of self and others

Results in a heart hardened toward God

“They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.” (Ephesians 4:18)

“He will renew your life and sustain you in your old age.”

(Ruth 4:15)

Winter

Approximate Age:

Elderly adults (ages 80 +)

Common Characteristics:

The years of dignity and self-respect

The years of receiving physical assistance from others

Measurement of Maturity:

Wisdom

“Is not wisdom found among the aged? Does not long life bring understanding?” (Job 12:12)

Failure to Grow:

Reaps loss of meaning or purpose to life

Results in facing death without hope

“So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.” (Ecclesiastes 2:17)

“Gray hair is a crown of splendor; it is attained by a righteous life.”

(Proverbs 16:31)

Published by Intentional Faith

Devoted to a Faith that Thinks

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