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The Fear of Growing Old (Psalm 71:18)

Introductory Thoughts

Many people suffer from gerascophobia which is the fear of growing old. Perhaps this condition is ultimately the fear of death rather than simply growing old, but other conditions indicative of old age cause people to fret. One of these concerns was expressed by the penman of Psalm 71. On two separate occasions, he requested that the Lord would not forsake him when he was old and grayheaded (Psalm 71:9, 18). The Lord knew the fears of man and promised, “even to your old age . . . and even to the hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you” (Isaiah 46:4). The thought of growing old should not bring fear or trepidation to God’s people. In fact, the Bible points to it as a blessing and one of the greatest blessings the Jewish people will experience in the kingdom (Zechariah 8:4).

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): God makes it plain that He is in charge of our lives (Psalm 37:23a) and He will always be with us (Hebrews 13:5). He also makes it plain that we are not to live anxiously or worry. This truth also applies to agonizing over the thought of one day growing old (Matthew 6:34; Philippians 4:6, 19).
  • (For everyone): What do you fear about growing older? Are these fears legitimately accurate? How will Gods presence and help allow you to overcome your fears?
  • What are some of the blessings of growing older? Why will it be such a blessing to the Jewish people to be able to grow older in the kingdom? Why should it be a blessing to those living today?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask the Lord to help you overcome your fears of growing older.
  • Thank God for the blessings you enjoy at each point of your life.