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Sermon Illustrations: Aged and Aging

Anecdotes

When Henry Ford, on his 75th birthday, was asked when he planned to retire, he said, "I haven't given a bit of thought to it. I'm going to stay around as long as I can be of use; and I want to be of use as long as I stay around."


Sir Christopher Wren, who built St Paul's Cathedral in London in the 17th century, served as professor of astronomy at Graham College and Oxford, then around the half-century mark, entered enthusiastically upon a new profession; he turned architect. In the 41 years after his 48th birthday he executed 53 churches and cathedrals, most of which still stand today.


You know you?re getting old when... You're asleep, but others worry that you're dead. You have a party and the neighbours don't even realise it. Your back goes out more often than you do. Your supply of brain cells is finally down to a manageable size. You sing along with the elevator music. You enjoy hearing about other people's operations. Your ears are hairier than your head. Your secrets are safe with your friends because they can't remember them either.


One day, an old man was walking down a country road when a frog jumped out in front of him and said, "If you kiss me I'll turn into a beautiful princess." The old man picked up the frog, carefully putting it in his coat pocket. "Hey, didn't you hear me?" the frog screamed. "Kiss me and I?ll turn into a gorgeous, available princess!" The old man said, "At my age I'd be just as happy with a talking frog."


Vanderbilt at 80 added more than $100 million to his fortune. Wordsworth earned the laureateship at 73. Thiers, at 73, established the French Republic and became the first president. Verdi wrote Falstaff at 80. Gladstone became prime minister of England for the fourth time at 83. Stradivari made his first violin after 60. Sir Walter Scott was $600,000 in debt at 55, but through his own efforts paid this amount in full.


There's a saying that describes an old person who is still enthusiastic: Nobody likes to see an old barn, but everyone loves to see an old barn burn.


One little girl said to another, "Why does your grandmother study the Bible so much?" "I'm not sure," came the reply. "I think she's studying for her finals."


A reporter interviewing a 104-year-old woman asked her, "What is the best thing about being 104?" "No peer pressure," she replied.


An old woman used fertility treatment to get pregnant and gave birth to a baby boy. When she got home from the hospital, her friends came over to visit. "So can we take a look at the baby?" they asked. "Not right now," the old lady replied. Thinking that the baby was asleep, her friends waited awhile then asked again, "So can we see him yet?" "No," said the old lady. A couple more hours passed and they asked again to see the baby. "No," she replied again. "Not yet." "But we came over especially! So when can we see your baby?" her friends demanded. "When he cries," the woman replied. "But why do we need to wait till he cries?" "Because I can't remember where he is," said the woman.


A young man asked an old man, "What's it like to be really old." "Fantastic," said the old man. Another old man overheard this and said, "He must have had a terrible youth."


Aged Benefits: If ever held hostage you are likely to be released first. No one expects you to run into a burning building. People no longer view you as a hypochondriac. You can eat dinner at 4:00. There's nothing left to learn the hard way. Things you buy now won't wear out. You enjoy hearing about other people's operations. You can party and the neighbours don't even realise it. You no longer think of speed limits as a challenge. Your back goes out more than you do. Your eyes won't get much worse. Your supply of brain cells is finally down to a manageable size. Your secrets are safe with your friends because they can't remember them either.


A man asked his 93-year-old uncle, "What is the secret of your longevity?" "I don't know," replied the uncle. "I wish I knew, so I could stop it."


An elderly woman asked her husband to get her some fruit salad and ice-cream and so he went to get it for her. Ten minutes later he returned with a plate of bacon and eggs. "Oh, George you silly old goat, you always forget," she said. "What Edna? What did I forget this time?" George replied. "The toast, you forgot the toast," Edna answered.


John Wesley wrote this in his journal 28th June, 1782: I entered my eightieth year; but, blessed be God, my time is not "labour and sorrow". I find no more pain or bodily infirmities than at five-and-twenty. This I still impute (1) to the power of God fitting me for what He calls me to do; (2) to my still travelling four or five thousand miles a year; (3) to my sleeping, night and day, whenever I want it; (4) to my rising at a set hour; and (5) to my constant preaching, particularly in the morning.


Socrates gave the world his best philosophy at 70. Plato was only a student at 50. He did his best teaching after 60. Bacon was 60 before he wrote his greatest works. Phillip Brooks, one of the world's distinguished preachers, was a major figure at 84. Gladstone was a leader in politics and intellectual circles at 80. Goethe finished his Faust at 82. Victor Hugo wrote Les Miserables at 62. Jules Verne was writing with imagination at 70. Noah Webster wrote his dictionary at 70.


Winston Churchill, was Prime Minister of Great Britain at 81. Clara Barton was the president of the Red Cross at 83. Robert Frost was still writing poems after 80. Oliver Wendell Homes was Justice of the Supreme Court until 91. Toscanini conducted the National Broadcasting Company Orchestra at 87. Frank Lloyd Wright designed the Guggenheim Museum at 86. John Wesley was still preaching at 88.


A stooped old man and a brisk young man chanced to meet one day. The young man said to the older one, in his usual braggart way, "Why don't you walk up straight like me? That's no way to grow old. It's all a form of habit, at least that's what I'm told." The old man gave him a knowing look, and said, "My dear young friend, have you ever examined a fine wheat field, and noticed the heads that bend? If not, just look them over close, as the harvest time draws nigh. You'll find the heads that are quite empty are standing tall and high, but the heads that count in the harvest time are filled, and bending low, awaiting the reaper's sickle, their time is short, you know." And as the young man passed on by, he slowly bowed his head. No doubt he pondered many a day on the things the old man said. Source unknown

Quotes


The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life. Muhammad Ali

Advancing years have enabled me to discover:-that I started out with nothing and still have most of it; now I have my head together but my body is falling apart; I don't remember being absent-minded; if God wanted me to touch my toes, he would have put them on my knees. Jeanette Bowden


When you get over the hill you begin to pick up speed.


When one is young, all thoughts turn to love. With age, all love turns to thoughts. Albert Einstein


Age is a high price to pay for maturity. Tom Stoppard


Men are like wine; age sours the bad, and improves the good. Cicero.


You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair. In the central place of your heart, there is a recording chamber; so long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer, and courage, so long you are young. General Douglas MacArthur.


I like spring, but it is too young. I like summer, but it is too proud. So I like best of all, autumn, because its tone is mellower, its colours richer and it is tinged a little with sorrow. Its golden richness speaks not of the innocence of spring, nor of the power of summer, but of the mellowness and kindly wisdom of approaching age. It knows the limitations of life and is content. Lin Yutang.


As a group creative workers, research scientists, inventors, painters, writers, philosophers not only live longer but remain productive longer that non-creative workers. Maxwell Malz


I prefer old age to the alternative. Maurice Chevalier.


Age is of no consequence unless you're cheese.


Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young. Henry Ford.


You know you?re old when: Your idea of weight-lifting is standing up, you try to straighten the wrinkles in your socks and find you're not wearing any.