Most people my age seem to have concluded that their best years are behind them. As a result, they’ve put their life on cruise control, content to grab a few fleeting moments of gusto amid years of decline and purposelessness.
Although I can sympathize with these sleepwalking friends, I’ve chosen to reject their unhopeful mindset. I’m still idealist enough to believe my final third of life can be the most enjoyable and impactful time I’ve ever had on this earth.
Perhaps you think this is just wishful thinking, but I’ve taken courage from historical figures who were late bloomers. Their greatest accomplishments happened in the final decades of their lives:
- Ray Kroc launched the McDonald’s hamburger chain when he was 52.
- Ronald Reagan never was elected to public office until age 55, when he became the Governor of California. Ultimately he became the oldest President in U.S. history and one of the most successful.
- Harland “Colonel” Sanders launched his Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise when he was in his mid-60s.
- Moses, famous for setting the Israelites free from slavery in Egypt, wasn’t commissioned by God for that assignment until he was 80. Despite growing up in luxury in Pharaoh’s household, he spent many disappointing years as an underachiever after killing an Egyptian and fleeing to the desert at age 40.
- Sarah finally bore her first child, Isaac, when she was 90—and her husband Abraham was 100, when his body seemed “as good as dead” (Romans 4:19).
Stories like these have caused me to conclude that it’s never too late to make your greatest impact on the world.
So I hope you haven’t already checked out of life. Your greatest joy and most important assignment may be just ahead.
If you’re still not convinced, I call your attention to Jesus’ first miracle, when he turned water into wine at the wedding feast in Cana. Tasting this miraculous wine, the head of the banquet marveled, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now” (John 2:10).
My friend, Jesus still can turn water into wine. He can take a drab, unexciting life and add unexpected flavor and fizz. And yes, the rest of your years can be the BEST of your years.
So quit spending all your time looking in the rearview mirror. Go ahead and open your heart to the Lord and the exciting possibilities He has for your future.