Sunday, February 08, 2009

What Kind of Old Man Will I Be?

"Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness" (Titus 2:2. English Standard Version).

Nothing may be uglier than a bitter, resentful, arrogant, and defensive old man. (Well, now that I think about it, such women are not exactly a pretty sight either.) I don't want to grow old and be characterized by those qualities. Thankfully, God does not want that for me, either. He has called and empowered me by the Holy Spirit to become a different kind of man.

In being sober-minded, God is calling me to think clearly. He does not want me to think more highly of myself than I should. He does not want me to think more lowly of myself than I should. He wants me to see the good things in life as good, and the evil things in life as evil.

In being dignified, God is calling me to live a life worthy of respect. He wants me to be responsible. He wants me to work hard and to take care of my family. He wants me to pay my taxes and my bills. He wants me to face problems and opposition with poise.

In being self-controlled, God is calling me to restrain my passions from getting out of control. He wants me to use my passions to serve his kingdom and his purposes. He does not want my passions to control me; he wants me to control them for the benefit of others. He does not want me to spend all of my money on myself; he wants me to restrain myself so that I can share with others.

In being sound in faith, God is calling me to trust himself. He wants me to continue to develop a healthy respect for his word and for his ability to control the universe. He does not want me to doubt him; he wants me to trust him.

In being sound in love, God is calling me to consider the needs of other people. He wants me to cultivate healthy relationships with those around me. He wants me to care about people who are struggling. He wants me to appreciate and enjoy the giftedness and successes of others.

In being sound in steadfastness, God is calling me to persevere. He wants me to be tough in facing life's challenges. He wants me to endure, even when things are not looking good. He wants me to continue to love himself and others around me. He wants me to continue to seek the best for those around me. He wants me to continue to be unashamed of Christ and his message. He wants me to continue to be honest, kind, and willing to help. He wants me to continue to find joy and hope in life. He does not want me to give up until the end.

If I follow his instructions, I can grow into the old man that both God and I want me to be.

4 comments:

Christy said...

It sounds like you're on your way to NOT being a grumpy old man.

Terry said...

Thanks, Christy!

CAUGHTNOTTAUGHT said...

Good post, Terry. I did a blog on this verse in its context over at http://caughtnottaught.blogspot.com/2008/10/titus-2-2-15.html

ED...

Terry said...

Thanks for sharing that post, Ed! Good stuff.