April 10, 2021

Expendability

Do not cast me off in the time of old age; do not forsake me when my strength is spent.
Psalm 71:9
This pandemic has revealed something about our culture that I think many people already knew. I remember chatting with a senior citizen after church a few years ago and mentioning how frustrating it was that my mother wasn't getting the healthcare I thought she deserved. The woman commented that this was the norm for people over 70. I have thought of that conversation many times since then, realizing more with each passing year how true her words were.

And then came covid. Despite the indisputable evidence that senior citizens were at more risk of hospitalization and death than just about everybody else, much of the general public and many elected officials enthusiastically advocated for doing away with all measures that would protect them from the virus. "We feel expendable," said more than a few. And, as far as those who did not feel threatened by the illness, they were.

The Bible has a lot to say about those who feel left out, rejected, or expendable. God is the protector not only of the young orphan, but also the old widow.  At the end of the 40th chapter of Isaiah, the prophet promises a renewal of strength beyond anything human will or human power can accomplish. The Apostle Paul makes a similar promise to those whose bodies grow old. There's an inner light that cannot be extinguished. Faith doesn't waste away, but is renewed daily until that moment when faith becomes knowledge and our bodies are renewed and our mortality becomes immortal in Christ.

So we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day.
 2 Corinthians 4:16
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
God our strong fortress, do not desert us in old age. Help us to follow your will through all our years and under all circumstances, that forever we may praise your faithfulness; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
 Liturgy of the Hours (Roman Catholic)

After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.
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