Q: My husband has always been a big fitness buff, and I think it’s because he’s afraid of growing old. The other day I heard him tell someone that he wasn’t going to get old and feeble like everyone else does. How can I help him be more realistic? — M. McL.
A: God certainly wants us to take care of ourselves; after all, he gave our bodies to us, and one way we honor him is by taking care of them. The Apostle John wrote in one of his letters, “Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you” (3 John 2).
Nevertheless, we all lose strength as we age, no matter how physically fit we are; to refuse to face this or to think that it’s not going to happen to us is simply unrealistic. Admittedly we’re all different; some people remain alert and strong well into their 90s. But no matter who we are, eventually our bodies (and also our minds) wear out if we live long enough, and every one of us will die. The Bible says, “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come. … Then people go to their eternal home” (Ecclesiastes 12:1, 5).
Yes, your husband needs to be realistic about the future. But I suspect his real problem is deeper than this. His real problem is spiritual and can be summarized in two words: fear and pride. He is proud of his strength, and he’s afraid of being weak.
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This is why the most important thing you can do is to pray for him and urge him to put his trust in Christ instead of himself. No matter what the future holds, Christ can be trusted, and he will never forsake us.
Write to the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, 1 Billy Graham Parkway, Charlotte, N.C., 28201 or visit www.billygraham.org.