The long haul

J. Davy Crockett III
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As I looked around the lovely setting that was the new Senior Citizen's Center, I saw a lot of folks enjoying themselves. Some of them were playing cards; others were playing chess or board games.

In the dance studio, some brightly dressed ladies were practicing a dance routine. People were coming and going, in good spirits, enjoying fun and fellowship. These people have finished their working years and are enjoying a leisurely retirement. There is certainly nothing wrong with that. It is the goal of most working people.

"Why don't you retire?" the director asked, as we toured the facility. I laughingly replied, "I don't have time to retire," which is true. There is simply too much to do, even at this stage of life.

What makes us tick? What would drive a person on, working well past retirement age? There are probably a variety of answers to that question. For some, it is a matter of economics, because they simply can't afford to retire. For others, it may be to escape boredom or loneliness at a stage in life when they have outlived many of their contemporaries. Some find their family has scattered, making it difficult to maintain close contact, so they continue to work for the social contact and the interaction with others.

As we look around our organization, we see many "mature" people, who, in other organizations, would probably be retired as a matter of policy. Yet, here, these men and women are productive into old age and cheerfully devote their lives to a cause to which they are committed.

You see, they have found the secret to meaningful, interesting, challenging activity that is more of a calling than a job. Their job description is found in an ancient book, which you know as the Bible.

For example: "And He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature'" (Mark 16:15). Notice, also: "And the gospel must first be published among all nations" (Mark 13:10 KJV).

Think about it. What a huge task it is to reach the whole world with a warning message that in reality brings great hope for all mankind. It is actually being done by the production of the Tomorrow's World television program, the Tomorrow's World magazine, plus study courses, booklets, and other educational materials. The various websites sponsored by the Living Church of God are also tools in disseminating the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

So around the world, small congregations support the work of preaching the "Good News." The job knows no age limits or restrictions. The headquarters and regional offices of the organization are staffed with folks of all ages, with many men and women who are past the usual retirement age. They work because they want to have a part preparing the way for the return of the Messiah.

Jesus promised in John 14:3 that he would return, "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also." Where will that be? Again, the Scriptures are very plain about the location of that Kingdom. Revelation 11:15 states, "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!" It is clear that Jesus Christ will reign on earth with the resurrected saints, at His return.

If being part of something much greater than yourself is appealing to you; if your life is without transcendent purpose, and your work without real meaning; if you dread growing old and being without meaningful work and interaction with others, don't despair. You, too, can find meaning, purpose and real joy in life by becoming a part of this work. You, too, can enjoy a life of purpose for the long haul.

If you are interested, request the booklet, Where Is God's True Church Today?

You can order it online or download it at any time, completely free of charge.

  Originally Published: 13th December 2007