Hi there, friends! It's time for another bi-weekly Challenge at Word Art Wednesday (WAW). This time, we are using a Scripture Word Art that comes from Psalm 92:13 which tells us, "Those that be planted in the house of the Lord shall flourish in the courts of our God."
This may sound strange for some but I'm wondering why people (including me) feel a sense of guilt when asking somebody their age? Why do I find myself saying, "Pardon me for asking, how old are you?" Truthfully, I didn't feel the same when I used to live in the Philippines. I'm not saying that Filipinos don't mind it but there's a major difference (cultural perhaps) in the way people react there and here in America. Since I started living here for many years now, I had to adapt to certain cultural etiquettes which includes refraining from asking people's age. Unless they looked exceptionally younger, I couldn't freely ask as some could seriously deem it offensive. So when I sense that someone wants to know my age (unless they're total strangers with questionable intent), I usually reveal it without hesitation. It doesn't make me feel bad at all to tell the truth. You see, I'm always grateful for the years that God has given me and the growth and experience the Lord put me through. The fact that He still uses me to proclaim the Gospel and bring glory to His name using the talents, abilities and gifts He blessed me with is something I am happy to share with everyone. Though there are obviously some physical limitations that comes with aging, I know in my heart that I have given my Lord nothing less than my very best---always acknowledging that He is the One enabling me to accomplish great things for His glory. I love what Isaiah 46:4 says, "Even in your old age, I will be the same, and I will bear you up when you turn gray. I have made you, and I will carry you; I will sustain you and deliver you."
For a believer in Christ (Born-again, John 3:3), there is no such thing as retirement in the ministry. There is always a room for both young and old in the Body of Christ (Church, Ekklesia). An article from biblereasons.com shares this, "When living by the Word of God, old age brings wisdom that is able to help and guide others in need. Old Christian men and women have a duty to help the younger generation. They have been through many hardships that will help your walk in faith. No matter what age, Christians should never fear death." We have confidence that we will be with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Our body may appear older, but our insides are being renewed daily. An elderly Christian never truly gets old. You only do so when you stop seeking the advancement of the kingdom of God. When you cease building up others in Christ and turn to watching television all day. This is the sad truth for many elderly believers. Many have lost their zeal for Christ and choose to live out their days in front of the television. Christ sacrificed Himself on the Cross to redeem us from our iniquities. Life will never stop being about Jesus Christ. Always remember that you're still alive for a reason" Wow, this is so true!
Although some of the things we were able to do in the Ministry when we were younger could no longer be done the same, it doesn't mean that we cannot use the talents/abilities God has given us in some capacity. In fact, He can give us new things to do if we're willing to continue learning. Romans 11:29 in the Amplified version says it clearly, "For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable (for He does not withdraw what He has given, nor does He change His mind about those to whom He gives His grace or to whom He sends His call)." So whether we are young or old, we are an important part of the Body of Christ. Do not allow your age to define and limit your work in the service of God. Each of us are valuable in the sight of our Lord as He chooses to partner with us to spread the Gospel (death, burial and resurrection) of Jesus Christ to save the lost and fulfilling His purpose here on earth. So in conclusion, I would like to share what My Life Application Bible wrote pertaining to our highlighted verse above. It says, "Palm trees are known for their long life. To flourish like palm trees means to stand tall and to live long. The cedars of Lebanon grew to 120 feet in height and up to 30 feet in circumference; thus they were solid, strong and immovable. The writer saw believers as upright, strong and unmoved by the winds of circumstance, Those who place their faith firmly in God can have this strength and vitality. Honoring God is not restricted to young people who seem to have unlimited strength and energy. Even in old age, devoted believers can produce spiritual fruit. There are many faithful older people who continue to have a fresh outlook and can teach us from a lifetime experience of serving God. Seek out an elderly friend or relative to tell you about his or her own experiences with the Lord and challenge you to new heights of spiritual growth."
For this Card, I used an image from DRS Designs called "Seaside Dock" that I colored using My Creative Expert/Prismacolor markers. I also used Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Broken China) for the background clouds using my made-up cloud stencils. The base of this card is a white CS, cut and scored to make a 5.5 inches square card. The pictures may not show but I also added a touch of glitter (Stickles-Crystal) to the tiny bird. I added some Imaginisce gems as well as fancy and regular stitching to this project. I love the result.
I hope you'd take the time to join us at our WAW Challenge. It's Anything Goes as long as it's family friendly with uplifting and inspirational messages, you can link up to 5 projects per week. Our sponsor this challenge is DRS Designs giving away a $20 GC to spend at their shop. I can't wait to see your projects and leave you some encouragement on your Blogs. Always remember that serving God is not dependent on how old you are, it relies solely in your commitment to be used by your Maker!
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