God Moving At Maranatha
The Long Walk in the Middle of Life
Our current sermon series, From Generation to Generation, is a celebration of our intergenerational character as a church. We want to be a community in which the generations connect, contribute and thrive together. Two weeks ago the Sunday message was about children. Last week, we looked at what God says to youth and young adults. This week we are focusing on the middle years of life.
“Middle age” seems like a straight forward concept—until you actually try to define it. Technically, given the average Canadian lifespan, the mid-point of life is around 41 years of age. Ironically, however, the Merriam Webster Dictionary defines middle age as “the period of life from about 45 to about 64.” To further confuse things, when people, or even experts, are surveyed, they propose conflicting start and end points for the middle years ranging from as early as 35 to as late as 65 years of age.
Taking the most generous estimate, 35 to 65 years of age, as our guide, we could say the middle years are years of productivity. Most of the ministries in our church are headed by people in their middle years. God has gifted these leaders with energy and life-experience, and He has grown them deep in their relationship with Him. We can be thankful that God is using this age group in this way.
When I think of the middle years, what first comes to mind is the idea of a long walk. I say this because, for Christians, life is a journey to be traveled hand-in-hand with God till the day we see Jesus face to face. So, this stretch of time could be called “the long walk with God in the middle of life.”
This long walk covers unpredictable terrain. It may contain remarkable and life-altering experiences with God. It may bring bigger challenges and more significant times of doubt than ever before. It will likely be filled with mountaintop highs, desert lows, and everything in between.
The one constant I see as I look back on that long walk in the middle of my own life is that God was always there. A small needlepointed verse sitting atop my dresser reads “…and lo, I am with you always (Matthew 28:20).” It whispers to me every day and it is true for all of us who put our faith in Jesus.
The middle years of life remind us that we are all on a walk with God. So, stay focused. Stay faithful. And journey on! --Pastor Tom