I’m getting older but please make me better not bitter.
Yesterday morning I rolled out of bed and realized I’d just turned 62. Where did the years go? People warned me to watch out for my 40th birthday and my 50th birthday and the 60th birthday. I breezed through those. But, God, you know this was the hard one. How is it possible I’m old enough to walk into the Social Security office and sign up?
You’ve given me a great life. I’ve experienced so many wonderful things.
Thanks to you my life is filled with amazing people. You’ve treated me far better than I deserve. Move over George Bailey. It’s been a wonderful life.
But like most people my age, I’ve known heartache and disappointment. And, not that I’m keeping score, but they weigh heavy on my shoulders. I’m starting to understand the temptation of old people to become bitter. For us older folk it’s easy to focus on:
- the unanswered prayer for a terminally ill friend.
- the promotion which went to someone less deserving.
- the illness which never goes away.
- the enemy who seems to have gotten away with murder.
- the friends who stabbed you in the back with a poisoned dagger.
- the people who take joy in making personal attacks.
- the perpetual snub by the boss.
When bitterness sets in, it makes sense. I understand. But God, help me to get better not bitter.
I don’t want my heart to shrivel up like a 10 day old peeled apple. I’m not interested in walking around with a smelly buffalo chip on my shoulder. I want to avoid living under a self-generated dark cloud of pitiful pity.
Dear God, help me to get better not bitter.
Help me to be a better husband, father, grandfather, and friend. Keep the frown off my face. I want to be a better champion for love. Chase away any judgmental spirit. Crush any sniff of arrogance. Smash even the slightest hint of rebellion against you. Make me the real deal.
God, with your help I intend to look toward the sunrise, not the sunset. I will anticipate the future and dissipate the past. I choose to focus on the good, not the bad. And when heartache camps on my doorstep help me to drop to my knees.
Dear God, I’m getting older but please make me better not bitter.
Thanks for listening.
Your Social Security Aged Friend,