As this year comes to a close, I have been reflecting on 2019 and a few decades earlier. Some things I would never change while there are other things in which I would do differently.

Oh to be 30 again! That’s the perfect age to start investing in a retirement plan. Honestly, I used to get so mad at Chris because he would shovel money into retirement when I thought I had a much better plan. I wanted cars, and boats, and travel, but he had insight into the future, and for that I am grateful.

I never fully realized the importance of shaping my children’s’ lives while I had a chance. Yes, we went to church, but we were involved in so many activities. Today I know that introducing a child to Jesus Christ is the most important thing we will ever do. While a personal relationship with Christ is an individual decision, as parents we have the opportunity to point them to the Lord by the way we live our everyday lives. Our children should see us pray and depend on God; they should see us love and serve others.

When I turned 40 my children were teenagers. As a parent of teens, living a godly life is still most important, but now I realize it is crucial to have them in a good church. An open door of communication with our children is also very important. May our children run to us with their issues and not run in the other direction because of our response.

The issues our teens face today are great, but our God is even greater. We should fast and pray for our children and let them know they are loved. If my children were teenagers under my roof, I would fast and pray for them like never before.

Now let’s talk about the 50’s. The kids are grown and many of us have grandchildren. In my younger days, I thought this would be the time to hang it all up and live the easy life! Once a parent always a parent. It’s my privilege to pray for my children. It’s my prayer that they grow in the Lord; I pray that they prosper with both God and man. I pray that God will keep them in the center of His will because that is when they will know lasting contentment. In our 50’s we also have the opportunity to pray for our grandchildren in the same manner. I also pray my grands will be saved at an early age, and live for the Lord all the days of their lives.

Long ago when I thought about turning 50, I figured I’d be contemplating the easy life. I mean surely God would send someone to fulfill my role in the church. I was so wrong; we never retire on God. Our roles may change, but we can always share the Good News and pray.

Looking back over a few decades, I’ve learned a lot! It’s important to save for retirement, but not more important than our relationship with the Lord. Our children need us to model a Christ like life while we are not perfect, we are forgiven. Next, our children and grandchildren desperately need our prayers. Finally, it’s so important to answer God’s call no matter what our age.

Sherry Lewis is pastor of New Beginnings Worship Center.

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