313. Embracing Decline

313. Embracing Decline

Last Sunday, I forgot to import keynote to our worship presentation software. I didn’t realize it until I saw the media team scrambling to find missing slides in the middle of my sermon. It just dawned on me that physically, I am declining. I apologized after the service to the media team because some may think they made the mistake.

I begin to understand more why older people often say, “My mind is still in my 20s”. I feel the same way. I still feel like I am young, but I realize I am declining in many ways, though it is relatively minor at this point.

For example, I’m forgetting many things, such as my next task, or ideas I had. My body gets stiffer faster, so I need to spend extra time stretching before every exercise. I used to enjoy trying different and more efficient ways of doing things, but now I find myself sticking with what I already know, even if it is not as efficient.

It is easier to handle failure on your way up. But it gets more difficult when you are on your way down. Time to time, it gets sad that I am no longer the younger version of myself.

But there is a clear benefit of getting older. I get more relaxed as I have experienced more things. I can see better before things happen, as I have seen how many situations play out before. I get injured less when exercising, as I spend a lot of time working on my mobility beforehand and am less reckless. I appreciate people more, as I don’t have energy to do the things I used to do on my own. The biggest benefit is being able to understand both younger and older people, as I experience a bit of both reality in my life currently.

Time is sacred because it is something we can’t change or alter. It humbles us, challenging us to embrace the limits put on our lives. Time is God’s creation, his gift to us, reminding us that there are unique experiences to enjoy in each stage of our lives.

It is never easy to admit that you are declining, as small as that may be. But I choose to embrace it, with the hope of becoming more like Christ inside because “outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” (2 Cor 4:16)