Challenges and Changes of Retirement

Posted on February 9, 2012. Filed under: Family, Uncategorized, Widows | Tags: , , , |

Every stage of life delivers challenges to learn and grow from.   Childhood and teenage years provide peer pressure, family bonding, and school experiences, developing us emotionally, physically, spiritually and socially. University and young adulthood challenge us constantly with new choices to make.  Parenthood provides physical exhaustion when children are young and often emotional exhaustion when children are grown.  The empty nest stage can bring confusion in roles and frustration in existing relationships.  But what about RETIREMENT?  It seems easy, right? There’s no more work and freedom abounding.  Recently chatting with retired friends at Craigy Hill Presbyterian, I have learned about some changes/challenges flavoring the senior season of life.

  1. Don’t give up!  Although it’s important to pass on the baton to the next generation in leadership areas, it is imperative to find new areas to continue to serve God and His people.  There is a great temptation to prefer comfort over continuing to serve God. Don’t let the mindset “Retirement: World’s longest coffee break” set in spiritually.  Continue to invest in others, especially with the wisdom you have gained!  An older couple recently took my husband and I out for a meal, we really enjoyed sharing stories and learning from their experience.  Have dinner with a younger couple to invest in their lives!
  2. Don’t be overwhelmed with worry.  At this stage of life, illnesses, children/grandchildren’s choices and family problems can cause a great deal of worry, anxiety and pain.   Focus on verses like: Isaiah 41:10, 13; Joshua 1:5-7,9; Philippians 4:6-7; 2 Timothy 1:7. Memorize verses to quote truth every time the devil tries to speak lies to your mind.
  3. Don’t waste your free time.  Almost every retired person I meet says that they don’t have any free time.  Set your priorities and stick with them!  Make goals and have a vision for these years of your life, otherwise they will evaporate into the air without your time/resources used well.  “Don’t Waste Your Life” by John Piper is a great book to read.

Here are a couple of resources which could be of help for you or loved ones in this season of life:

  1. Billy Graham wrote a book entitled “Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing.”  Some chapter titles include: Don’t retire from life, Influencing the Impressionable, and Fading Strength but Standing strong.
  2. An online article entitled “Marriage Challenges in the Later Stages of Life” brings Biblical and practical advice for couples.
  3. John Piper wrote a book entitled “Rethinking Retirement: Finishing Life for the Glory of Christ” which has been helpful for people.

This week I had the privilege to speak in Craigy Hill Presbyterian and Harmony Hill Presbyterian.  Enjoy the pictures 🙂

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