Yesterday I spoke at the St Stephens Monday fellowship to a wonderful group about the work of Embracing Age, the intrinsic value of older people and tips for growing older gracefully. I shared a comment one of our trustees made on Sunday: many people see old age as the winter of our lives, a time of barrenness and loss, when the leaves have fallen and the tree is bare.
But actually it is the autumn of our lives, a time of fruitfulness and rich colours.
I left them with a quote from Billy Graham in his 90's:
"Life is seldom easy as we grow older, but old age has its special joys – the joy of time with family and friends, the joy of freedom from responsibilities we once had, the joy of savouring the little things we once overlooked.
But most of all, as we learn to trust every day into His hands, the golden years can be a time of growing closer to Christ. And that is life’s greatest joy”.
It's so exciting to be able to start a new faith inspired charity for older people. We are at the beginning of our adventure and are looking forward to making a difference in the lives of older people. The name Embracing Age has a two fold meaning. It's about embracing frail older people with love and practical support, motivated by our Christian faith. But secondly it's about encouraging people to embrace getting older. I looked in the mirror one morning at all my grey hairs coming through, realising that it I tried to pluck out any more I'd be bald in no time! I decided that I was going to embrace ageing - let my grey hair be a symbol of having some experience of life under my belt, and that I'm older and hopefully wiser than I used to be. The future can be full of hope whatever age we are!