Aging in the Grace of God

Fresh, Fat, and Flourishing: Aging in the Grace of God

Flipping through the photo album I silently hoped the obvious would not be spoken out loud.  But of course it was: “That’s you, Mom?  You look so…different!”

Any number of adjectives could have been used at that moment; “different” wasn’t too bad I suppose.  

There is no need to rattle off a list of all that has physically changed over the years, as you likely have a list of your own.

The physical changes, however, are not the only changes that would have been noticed if the photo album was able to capture that which was more than skin-deep. 

The changes the Lord has worked within – through the lessons learned, the trials endured, and the victories won –  resulted in marks of maturity and  growth in godliness which surely would have been noticed too.  

As I consider how “different” I am (the current me) in comparison to the girl in the album (the past me), I wonder about the future me:  what will she be like then? How will the next few seasons of life leave her: marked by maturity or marked by life’s bitter disappointments?  Weary and wrinkled?  Or refreshed and rejuvenated?

Rejuvenated…that’s an odd word to describe the aging process, isn’t it?  

According to the Word of God and the lessons from the palm and cedar tree, not necessarily!

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Aging in the Grace of God

“The godly grow like a palm tree; they grow high like a cedar in Lebanon.  Planted in the Lord’s house, they grow in the courts of our God.  They bear fruit even when they are old; they are filled with vitality and have many leaves.”  (Psalm 92:12-14 NET, emphasis mine)

The KJV puts it this way: “…They shall still bring forth fruit in old age; they shall be fat and flourishing…” (verses 13-14, emphasis mine)

The older they get, the more fruit a palm tree produces.  

What a vision for our lives. 

Yes, there will be more wrinkles, more gray hairs, and a host of other physical differences as we journey through life, but there will also be more fruit, more flourishing, and more “fat.” 

With each passing day and year, in Him, we can bear more – not less – fruit.  The fruit may look different from season to season, but there will still be fruit.  

Matthew Henry noted, “Other trees, when old, leave off bearing, but in God’s trees the strength of grace does not fail with the strength of nature.  The last days of the saints are sometimes their best days, and their last work their best work…”

The psalmist also compared the godly to the cedars of Lebanon.  These trees grew in the mountains to an incredible height: up to 120 feet it is believed.  They were not only tall but wide, making them immovable despite winds or other forces of nature.  

Friends, this is a picture of who He is growing us into as we continue to walk with Him year after year: not only women who are fruitful but women who are strong and immovable, regardless of what may come our way.  

Corrie ten Boom stated, “The tree on the mountain takes whatever the weather brings.  If it has any choice at all, it is in putting down roots as deeply as possible.” 

We have the benefit of experiencing His past faithfulness, being convinced of His love, and seeing His Word come to pass time and time again, resulting in our roots deepening in Him with each passing year.  

Another characteristic of the palm tree is that they thrive in dry places. Even in the dry and unfavorable seasons of our lives, we can thrive in Christ. In fact, these are the times our faith tends to thrive the most as we find that He is all we truly need.  

Don’t you long to be fresh, fat, and flourishing – women who remain fruitful and immoveable, thriving in Him? What a vision for our latter years! I don’t know about you, but I would gladly accept the physical differences captured by a camera, visible to the human eye,  in order to experience inner rejuvenation in Him as illustrated by the palm and cedar trees.

Will we make it our aim to be fresh, fat, and flourishing? Will we continue to sink our roots into the soil of Christ’s love in order to be planted in Him and nourished by His Word? 

Will we catch this vision of the blessedness – the gift – that comes with each passing year as we walk with the Lord, sharing the fruit and fat we have gained with those coming behind us?

If we do, we can be certain that the best is yet to come, that the “strength of His grace” will not fail, and that our last days can be some of our best days,  for the glory of His name.

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11 Comments

  1. Thank you Cara my sweet sister! This was a great word and more ladies need to be reminded of their purpose for the Kingdom of God as we age! Let us reflect Him more and more as we age. All for His glory!

    1. Amen!! In Him the best is yet to come! May we be faithful for all of our days, all for His glory!

  2. Thank you Cara! I’m Tiff’s mom and she sent this to me! I really needed it!
    Love in Jesus!
    Pam Markley

  3. I needed this Truth. Aging is a process but you helped me to see I actually became more beautiful with my current photos although i see wrinkles if the camera captured my heart now vs then i am actually more beautiful on the inside where it truly counts. I appreciate you and I know through you God spoke to me.

    1. This made my day, Sonya! I am so grateful that by His grace and through His Word you were reminded that you are a masterpiece, HIS masterpiece, and that His beauty only shines through you more, not less, which each passing day and year!

  4. Wow, what a timely word for me. That was such an encouragement for us to grow older gracefully. I cringed every time I read the word “fat” but I remembered a teacher once told me that it made a great acrostic for “faithful, available and teachable”. I am well with that meaning. Lol.

    Thank you Cara for letting your roots go deep through the different seasons of your life and for allowing me to enjoy the “fruit” of your labors.

    1. I remember that acronym, too! I love it! I am so blessed that this encouraged and blessed you, and I can say the same to you: thank you for the blessing that you are to so many, through *all* seasons.

  5. Hi Cara, I just happen to find this not knowing you have this blog. Anyway, what a blessing, this blog ministered to me, experiencing this myself has placed a new freshness in my pursuit of God and His will for the life He gave me. Knowing that with age, continued steadfastness in the Word of God and different trials weathered with God continues to make me like a Lebanon cedar tree, with my roots running deeper for the Lord, unremoveable from the palms of His hand. “Good people will prosper like palm trees, Grow tall like Lebanon cedars; transplanted to GOD’s courtyard, They will grow tall in the presence of God, lithe and green, virile still in old age.” Praise God! We are not rendered useless or unfit because of the blood of Christ pour out on our behalf but remain vessels of honor for His Glory and for His purposes until the end. God bless you and thank you for your message “Fresh, Fat, and Flourishing: Aging in the Grace of God.” May God continue to bless you, your family and your God given Ministry. 🙏 😇❤

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