They are so old that … (You finish the sentence!)

Age is something that is of life long interest to us all. Whether we are counting the day until we will be old enough for something or thinking about the days we may or may not have left, we are interested in age. Some folks fixate on it to the exclusion of all else in their lives. Some people are kind of like Juan Ponce de Leon looking for that magic fountain that gave eternal youth. Legend had it that anyone who drank from the fountain would never grow old. Ponce de Leon organized two expeditions to find the fountain and was killed in the process.

How important is your age to you?

I love this little story of one mother being faced by that question:

My 12 year old daughter asked me, "Mom, do you have a baby picture of yourself? I need it for a school project." I gave her one without thinking to ask what the project was. A few days later I was in her classroom for a parent-teacher meeting when I noticed my face pinned to a mural the students had created. The title of their project was "The oldest thing in my house." (From "Life In These United States," Reader's Digest.)

Some folks seek youth rather than wisdom. Some seek physical pleasure rather than spiritual maturity. What about you, what is your goal in this life?

I have to admit that living forever is not a bad goal; it's where you look for everlasting life that makes the difference! Jesus has a famous story about a person that speaks to this issue:

And Jesus gave this illustration: "A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. In fact, his barns were full to overflowing. So he said, 'I know! I'll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I'll have room enough to store everything. And I'll sit back and say to myself, my friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry'" (Luke 12:16-18 NLT).

This guy wasn't a whole lot different from us, was he? Here he was at the peak of his earning capability and he was planning for his retirement. He had everything in order to buy that condo on the beach so he could sit back and enjoy life. God, however, had other ideas. Do you remember why he told this story? It was because a man came to him wanting him to make his brother share his parents' inheritance with him. Jesus said, "Beware! Don't be greedy for what you don't have. Real life is not measured by how much we own" (Luke 12:14-15).

Jesus ends the story like this: "But God said to him, 'You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get it all?' "Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God" (Luke 12:20-21 NLT).

What are you pursuing?
There are several really important phrases in this passage, but just in case you missed them, here are two.

"Real life is not measured by how much we own.""A person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God."

Friend, what are you pursuing?

If you want to live forever and have a retirement that is out of this world, then start working on a rich relationship with God!