But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day. (Proverbs 4:18, ESV)
First off, let me encourage you to not think, oh — this is only for those who are in their older years. This is written with everyone in mind. Some of us have many years ahead before retirement, others of us are close to the brink, while others are solidly there. We all should consider, at each age and stage of life, how we are to live it.
Looking toward one’s retirement years is somewhat of a conundrum. On the one hand, we look forward to stepping away from the workaday grind and get some time to wind down, to do those things that we’ve looked forward to doing for some time. Some are of the “turn in your time card and trade in your [super] — let travel plans and golf-course leisure lead the way” school of thought. Another form of this is that group that looks forward to driving that big land yacht of a motorhome with the bumper sticker “We’re Spending Our Kids’ Inheritance.” On the other hand, there are those whose worries about retirement can be summed-up in that the seeming “prison sentence,” the retreat of retirement will mean a move from a time of busy-ness and involvement and engagement with life to one of less and less ability to engage with others physically or mentally.
John Piper addresses these approaches: “Finishing life to the glory of Christ means finishing life in a way that makes Christ look glorious. It means living and dying in a way that shows Christ to be the all-satisfying Treasure that he is.” (Rethinking Retirement)
“The Christian life,” as we age, “is not one of moving toward night; it’s moving toward noon. There are no sunset years.” The time, treasures, and talents that the Lord has given us in Christ demands much!
The Westminster Shorter Catechism, Question 1, asks, “What is the chief end [purpose] of man? And the answer is “The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.” Every moment of every day of every decade our purpose is to glorify God. And in the glorification of Him is the enjoyment of knowing Him. So, for Whom and for what are you living? For Whom and for what are your retirement years for?