About ten years ago while visiting my mom who at the time was living in Venice, Florida I attended a church in the town during my visit.
During the priest’s homily he said something that I’m sure hit a nerve with many of the parishioners who were largely retired snow birds. He said that since they were still alive, God had more of a plan for them than to just play golf or cards, travelling or watching TV all day (Or now updating our FB status). After he said it there was a great deal of shuffling in seats and embarrassed looks.
I’m sure it didn’t make him popular with many in attendance but it’s something we all need to hear from time to time and I’m not just talking about retirees. I do believe we are all here for a reason and are given certain gifts to share with the world. If that is so then it doesn’t seem right that we should squander those gifts.
At times we can become tired, depressed and left feeling like we don’t matter but the truth is we do. Our gifts and abilities may seem insignificant to us in the big scheme of things but in reality there is always something we can bring to the table.
I’m not just talking about those of us who are healthy and able but also those who may have an illness or disability. As long as we’re alive there are things we can do that can make a difference in another person’s life or in the world.
It can be something big or even as small as a kind word or even a simple smile. What the priest went on to tell us that day was that just because someone is retired or out of the workforce doesn’t mean they don’t have anything to offer the world. They have a vast experience in many things that they can bring to the table in all sorts of ways as a volunteer or mentor. As a matter of fact they now have the time to give of themselves that they might not have had while they were working or raising a family.
As for the younger folks, even though they are busy with school, raising a family or working, there is generally enough time to volunteer, learn a new hobby or sport and activity. They also bring with them an energy and new way of looking at the world that is very valuable.
I’ve seen too many people that are only focused on their careers and then when they retire that don’t know what to do with themselves. Many end up dying at a relatively young age not long after retiring because they don’t feel they have anything else to offer or have other interests.
Now I’m not suggesting people stay busy 24/7 and wear themselves out doing good deeds and using their gifts and talents but I do believe it’s healthy both mentally and physically for us to make good use of out time, gifts and talents and continue to make a positive impact on the world.
I’m trying my best to not let any moss grow on me, despite my increasingly advanced age, and I hope you try to do the same.
Thanks for checking in this week and I hope you have a great holiday season.