When you were a kid, chances are good someone suggested now and then that you should, “act your age.” The assumption was that you were being silly or inappropriate in some way, and needed to remember to behave in a way that was a bit more adult. It may have been a message with a shred of truth in it, but is it possible to take that adage a bit too far? We might imagine that acting our age when we’re a responsible adult means we never slip back into those childlike moments of gleeful silliness. In fact, we can become so good at acting our age, we can hardly find a reason to smile. Beyond that, when we get somewhere around retirement age, we might assume that to act our age means we simply give up our hopes and dreams and cruise on to the finish line. 

Personally, I love stories of people who don’t act their age. The artist known as Grandma Moses decided at the age of 73 that she wanted to paint. Her desire to paint started a whole new career to the ripe age of 101, and one of her paintings outlived her and sold for over a million and a half dollars. No doubt, some of her companions likely told her that what she wanted to do was impossible, impractical, and couldn’t be commercially viable. She should settle down, paint for a hobby and act her age. Fortunately, she didn’t give age a second thought. She simply decided to do something new, and it turned out she was good at it.

You might remember a guy named Joshua who was with Moses and helped search out the promised land. He was in his forties then, but at 85 he had this to say. “I am 85 years old and I’m just as strong today as I was when Moses sent me out. I am still strong enough for war or anything else. Now then, give me the hill country that the LORD promised me on that day when my men and I reported.”  Time had slipped by, and the promise of God had not yet been fulfilled, but Joshua was just as ready forty years later as he was before. His strength had not failed him because his heart was filled with God’s promise.

So what about us? What does it mean to act your age? Maybe it means to take everything you’ve learned so far and put it to better use than you ever have. Maybe it means to make the choices you’ve longed to make for years, but simply haven’t because those choices didn’t meet the approval of others. Maybe it means you surrender everything you are to God and let Him shape and mold you into a new possibility. “Act your age” could mean it’s time to be the you God created and live out your life and your dreams as fully as possible. 

Remember, with God all things are possible, no matter what your age may be.

It’s time for a happy dance!


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