Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Is Aging an Illness?

I read an article recently about how the treatment of ageing could be revolutionised by a new approach that classes it as an illness. David Gems, a biogerontologist, is quoted to have said at a conference in London, “If ageing is seen as a disease, it changes how we respond to it. For example, it becomes the duty of doctors to treat it.”

This statement upset me a great deal. Yes, ageing is a difficult process. I’m not as physically or mentally fast as I used to be. I’m more fragile. I have grey hairs, laugh lines and my eye sight is failing. But I’m not about to call it an illness.

Ageing is a natural process. It reminds us that this world and these bodies are only temporary. (2 Corinthians 4:7)

I’m not about to go all dark ages on anyone either and claim we aren’t allowed to cover up those grey hairs, or can’t use technologically advanced moisturiser. What I am saying however is that we don’t need to be afraid of our mortality. We don’t need to become obsessed with our appearance.

God will love us no matter how withered we become. He will be our strength when we grow weak (Isaiah 46:4). He is the light that shines out from us and makes us eternally beautiful (Revelation 21:23). He is our home. He is our forever.


Cristi said...

Yes, this is an earthy body and no matter how much we try eventually we will age. My husbands Grandma is one truly amazing and Godly women but then when it comes to her apperiance you would think she would be happy with herself since she knows she is God's beautiful creation but still at the age of almost 90 she is obsessed with her apperiance. This just was an eye opening exsperiance, I need to learn to love myself because God created me. I am working on it but it is a daily struggle. I don't want to me 90 and concerned or worred how I look. God truly loves me know matter and He truly loves all of us. Thank you for the reminder daily of His LOVE!!!

Sandy said...

We are fearfully and wonderfully
made, Lynda.;) Growing older is
a natural process. This life is
only a wisp compared to eternity.
If we keep our eyes on Jesus He
will be with us through this
process and I do believe (as
Smith Wigglesworth liked to say)
that we can go to the grave in
full vigor! We need not be ill
when we leave this earth, just
ready to go to Him. What a
glorious thought!

alicia said...

I look at my 93 year old grandmother and see beauty. A beauty that is earned only by the aging process, the results of 9 decades of living for Him. Yes, some of it's painful, but He never promised life would be easy, just that He'd be there to help us through it.
Thanks for the beautiful post!

Karen said...

Amen! Not an illness...just a journey....

Lorena G. Sims said...

What should matter is how we live. God made us perfect in his eyes and he loves us the way we are.Aging is indeed a natural process.

Lynda Young said...

Cristi, if I make it to 90 like your husband's Grandma, then I hope that I care enough about my appearance that I try to look respectable, but not so obsessed that it becomes an issue. I hope that I never forget that God loves me no matter how I look.

Sandy, eternity is indeed the bigger picture.

Alicia, yes, that's so very true: living for Him does make us all beautiful. And it is a beauty that lasts forever.

Karen, and an interesting and blessed journey too.

Lorena, beautifully said. :)

sarah said...

didn't God use Abraham and Sarah in their old age??? and I think Noah too. Aging is not an illness...great post.

Rochelle said...

oh my word! aging isn't a disease!! that's crazy talk! great thoughts on this!

Lynda Young said...

Yes, exactly, Sarah :)

Rochelle, it is crazy talk, but so many obsess over it which is so terrible. Time lost in fretting.

july_blogista said...

Indeed. It's a normal physiologic process. All of us go through it inevitably. learned from your writing. =)

Lynda Young said...

Julie Ann, welcome to this blog and thanks for leaving a comment. :)

Just Be Real said...

I am trying to have the mind set that God can use me as I age. Thanks for sharing Lyn.