TO VALUE PEOPLE
“You shall rise up before the gray headed, and honor the aged, and you shall revere your God; I am the Lord.” Leviticus 19:32
HELLO C. O.S. readers!
When I was very young, I didn’t have a good perspective of what the value of an older person was. Age wasn’t just a number then. I did not know much about value as a human being. There was an older woman that babysit the four of us from time to time. It was always a scary experience for us. She lived alone apparently and never smiled that I could remember. Very often she would be reprimanding us; telling us “Shut up!” She astounded us by speaking to us in that way. Our mom didn’t speak to us that way, so why was she so mean? We didn’t think we were misbehaving very badly and could never understand that. Our grandparents, so prim and proper, brought us gifts, but they never talked to us that way either.
Our neighbor, when I was a teen, was an older man who bred pointers and sold them. His wife died and I remember he seemed quite lonely as well as having health issues. Eventually he ended up married again being probably in his 60’s or 70’s. He was quite neighborly at least and was friends with the manager of our house.
First impressions of older people were not good for me. I could never imagine being that age, and seemingly it would be forever before it happened. I was rather apprehensive about it considering all I had observed growing up. Remember too, the sayings like: “The old gray mare, she ain’t what she used to be, ain’t what she used to be…” Another one I recollect is “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks…” If any of these sayings were based on any iota of truth, it made older years something to dread.
Do people think seniors are ‘washed out’? That kind of thinking bothers me. Very frequently I hear about an elderly person being attacked and I think, doesn’t anyone respect their elders? Why do attacks take place on those who are older and weaker? 7NEWShttp://whdh.com
A nurse says:”Much value is placed on the lives of infants, children, and younger adults. However, older people are often devalued in American society. We can see the bias toward youthful populations come to life when we tell the public where we work.”— “The Elderly Are Devalued”.
Now, however, I do believe older people definitely have more to look forward to than when I was younger. I started thinking…..if we devalue the elderly, how can we change that perspective? One article reads: “Unless we change the way we view old age, the generation younger than the boomers will treat them the same way as soon as they show a few more wrinkles, or seem a bit shaky on their feet.” http://oregonstate.edu—- Study: Elderly go from being perceived as capable consumer to ‘old person.’
How can we show value and respect to older people or encourage/support them?
First of all, we cannot put a price on the value on a human life; all life is sacred. God created man in His image and old or young, ‘they’ all have value and worth.
Declaration of Independence even declares this:
” We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Matt. 10:29-31- “Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Therefore do not fear, you are of more value than many sparrows.” Young or old, we all have the same value.
Secondly, they have value for the right reasons. As it is said, they ‘silver in the hair’, or ‘gold in the teeth’, but some how I don’t think they want to be valued for those reasons. Their value is much more in that they bring years or decades of experience into a conversation or situation. They have experienced difficulties, joys, and griefs, and hopefully, successes also. “Wisdom is found with the elderly, and understanding come with long life.” Job 12:12 The ability to share with the up and coming generations the way in which you can navigate certain circumstances is invaluable. A lot of times they also have a good sense of humor . Though many seniors don’t live close to their families, they still desire to share their lives with them and others. ( http://abcfastdirectory.com– church articles)
Third, a lot of seniors are living longer and longer these days. They are also accomplishing more things and contributing to society. I read about a “great-grandmother, Mary Bochanis, who has been volunteering for 73 yrs. at the RED CROSS.” Dorothy Davenhill Hirsch at 89 yrs visited the north pole. Minoru Saito at 77 sailed around the world. At 95 Nola Ochs graduated from Fort Hays State University in Kansas. It is very inspiring to read about the accomplishments seniors are making now a days.
To conclude, yes, there is still much value in old age. All people have worth, and seniors have much more knowledge and experience to share as well as opportunities to accomplish other objectives and feats. There is much to look forward to and I’ve only just begun to touch on that. More to come in the future on this subject. Until the next sunset!
“Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, The last of life, for which the first was made.” Robert Browning
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