Musings on Turning 50
By Lisa Lueken
I am so excited that Pastor Ritch is preaching through Romans and has camped on Romans 12:1-2: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” because it is my life verse!
However, a few months before my birthday, God really changed my mind about growing older. First, He gave me I Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it,” and I thought, men and women have been turning 50 for centuries! This is not new but rather “common to man.” And God is FAITHFUL. Then I ran across this verse in the Bible, Proverbs 31:25, “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.” And I thought to myself, “Lisa, this role model of a woman that God has established in His word for all time is NOT AFRAID to grow old! In fact, she laughs at the days to come!” (What is wrong with me?!) Finally, the Lord reminded me of this precious truth in II Peter 1:3 “His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness,” and I grabbed hold of the fact that God (who is FAITHFUL) will give me everything I need to have a purposeful, godly life for my good and His glory. I can trust Him to help me grow old in a way that honors Him.
With these “new” truths, I began to think differently about turning 50. I stopped thinking about all of the things I can’t do at 50 (like see to read without help; wear certain fashions because they are not “age appropriate” or, quite frankly, no longer flattering; or lift heavy weights over my head because of a shoulder injury from CrossFit!), and I began to think about the things I can do at 50 that I couldn’t do at age 25 (like teach a bible study; encourage a young woman with a small child; or start my own business). And you know what? The list of things I CAN do is actually longer than the list of things I CAN’T do! Now I realize that as we age, these lists may flip flop. But I am resting in this sentiment expressed by the Apostle Paul in II Corinthians 4:16, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day,” and I do not lose heart.
If you have made it this far, thank you for reading my musings on turning 50. My goal in sharing is to give God glory for how He has changed my heart and my attitude and given me HOPE for my life and to encourage you to no longer conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. Growing older is a lot easier with the truths of God’s word, the love and support of friends and family, and the satisfaction of living out God’s purpose for my life in His church!
Lisa has been attending Bethany Baptist Church since 1998 when she moved with her husband, Ted, and three children to Peoria, IL. Over the years, she has served in the Career Class, as a trainer for Evangelism Explosion, as a mentor to young women ,and most recently as a bible study teacher and biblical counselor. Lisa is passionate about God’s word and making His glory known in the lives of the women she ministers to!
When she is not working or serving in church, Lisa enjoys walking in her neighborhood, thrifting, dining out with her husband, and spending time with family – especially when all 3 of her children and her daughter-in-law are home!