couple of weeks ago I flipped the page on the calendar and left my 40’s forever.

once told me that any birthday that ends in a “0” is traumatic. Personally,
I didn’t have any problem with 10 or 20, and 30 didn’t really bother me, either.
In fact, 40 was less traumatic than 45. Assuming that the odds are against me
living past 90, at 45 it really did feel like I was now living in the second half
of my life.

August 18 is when I hit the big 5-0. Half way to Willard Scott territory. The
day I officially qualified for AARP membership. (Yes, they’ve reduced the age
to 50 now.) As soon as my membership card arrives, I’m heading to McDonald’s for
free coffee; I don’t actually drink coffee, but there’s the principle of the thing.
I just wonder if you’re allowed to claim an AARP discount when you bring along
your 4 and 8-year-old sons for happy meals.

course, not everyone understands such things. I recently took my four-year-old
for lunch. As we were preparing to leave, the waitress said, “It’s so nice
you could take your grandson out today.” I responded, “Yes. And by the
way, his dad will be along soon with the money for the tip.”

interesting to be 50 and have two young sons. I don’t know whether they’ll keep
me young or kill me. (They haven’t decided yet.)

the other day I told James, our eldest, that his dad might be 50 but he had the
body of a 25-year-old. My son responded, “You’d better return it. You’re
stretching it out and getting it wrinkled.”

again, it could be worse. (And probably will be eventually.) At some point I could
be in a similar situation to the elderly man who was driving down the street when
his wife noticed that they had just driven through a red light without stopping.
Assuming that it was just an oversight, she relaxed until they went through the
next red light without stopping. The wife began to be concerned. As she was struggling
with this they went through another red light without stopping. That did it! She
turned to the driver and said, “Bob, do you realize you have been going through
red lights without stopping?

which Bob replied, “Oh, am I driving?”

anticipation of better things, however, here’s my favorite aging story:

was an old couple – each was 85 years old and they had been married for 60
years. They were both in extremely good health due to the wife’s insistence on
healthy foods and exercise.

they were far from rich, they managed to get by because they watched their pennies
carefully. In honor of their 60th anniversary, though, they decided to splurge
and take a to Hawaii. On the way to the Islands, however, their plane crashed,
sending them to heaven.

reached the Pearly Gates and St. Peter escorted them inside. They gasped in amazement
as St. Peter led into a beautiful mansion filled with the finest furnishings.
He said, “Welcome to Heaven. This will be your new home.”

husband asked “Why?”

Peter said, “This is your reward in Heaven.”

old man then saw a beautiful golf course complete with club house and spa. The
club house had the most wonderful buffet lunch spread out. St. Peter told the
man all this was theirs to enjoy at no cost. After all, this was Heaven!

old man wanted to know where the health food was. St Peter told him that because
this was Heaven you could eat what ever you wanted and never get fat. You never
had to exercise or be careful of blood pressure.

old man then looked at his wife and said, “If it hadn’t been for you and
your bran muffins, we could have been here 10 years ago!”


Duduit is Editor of Preaching magazine and President of American Ministry
Resources. You can write to him at michael@preaching.com, or visit his website
at www.michaelduduit.com.

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About The Author

Michael Duduit is the founding publisher and editor of Preaching magazine. He is also the founding Dean of the new College of Christian Studies and Professor of Christian Ministry at Anderson University in Anderson, South Carolina. Michael is author and editor of several books, including the Handbook of Contemporary Preaching (Broadman & Holman Press), Joy in Ministry (Baker Books), Preaching With Power (Baker) and Communicate With Power (Baker). From 1996 until 2000 he served as editor of the Abingdon Preaching Annual series. His email newsletter, PreachingNow, is read each week by more than 40,000 pastors and church leaders in the U.S. and around the world. He is founder and director of the National Conference on Preaching and the International Congress on Preaching, which has been held in 1997 at Westminster Chapel in London, 2002 at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and 2007at Cambridge. He has been a pastor and associate pastor, has served a number of churches as interim pastor, and speaks regularly for churches, colleges and conferences.

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