by Crystal Bowman
I will tell everyone about your righteousness. All day long I will proclaim your saving power, though I am not skilled with words.I will praise your mighty deeds, O Sovereign Lord. I will tell everyone that you alone are just. Psalm 71:15-16 NLT
My mother lived to be ninety-seven and a half years old. Just like young children add “a half” to their age when they reach it, some seniors do the same. A half year is important when you are young or old. What was more important to my mother, however, was not her age, but how she could continue to serve God while she still had her life on earth.
Mom was strong and healthy until she reached ninety-four and a half years. During the last three years of her life, she became weak and unable to walk without assistance. At times, she sunk into a feeling of helplessness and wondered why God hadn’t taken her home. But every morning, as she sat in her recliner with a cozy throw, she opened her Bible and met with God one-on-one. Mom talked to God, and He talked to her.
One day, as she read Psalm 71, the Holy Spirit reminded her that He still had a purpose for her life. Even with her physical limitations, she could continue to tell other about Jesus as she had done in her younger years. In that passage, the Psalmist cries out to God to be the rock he can always go to. The Psalmist praises God for being his hope since he was young. And in verses 17-18 he says, “O God, you have taught me from my earliest childhood, and I constantly tell others about the wonderful things you do. Now that I am old and gray, do not abandon me, O God.
Let me proclaim your power to this new generation, your mighty miracles to all who come after me”(NLT).
My mom claimed that verse for the rest of her life. She praised God and spoke about Him to everyone—the aides who cared for her, other residents in her retirement home, the hair stylist, and friends and family who came to visit her. But her deepest desire was to pass on her legacy of faith to future generations.
Every day she prayed for her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren by name. She prayed that they would know Jesus and follow Him all the days of their lives. She prayed for them to have wisdom, guidance, and good health. She prayed for good friends, future spouses, and protection from evil. She prayed for a baby to grow in my daughter-in-law’s empty womb, and God answered that prayer three times!
Mom has been in heaven now for three and a half years. Now it’s my turn to carry on the legacy she passed on to me. As I pray for my children and grandchildren by name, every day, I pray that they would know Jesus and follow Him all the days of their lives. I pray for them to have wisdom, guidance, and good health. I pray for good friends, future spouses, and protection from evil.
I do not have gray hair, and I don’t feel old, even though “old” is only a short decade away. But like the Psalmist who wrote Psalm 71, I want to proclaim God’s power to a new generation and tell of His mighty miracles to all who come after me.
This article is brought to you by the Advance Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Crystal Bowman is a bestselling, award-winning author of more than 100 books including, Our Daily Bread for Kids. She and her husband have three married children and eight huggable grandchildren.
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Join the conversation. What legacy do you hope to leave behind?