In Psalm 71:16-19 we read:
My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,
of your deeds of salvation all the day,
for their number is past my knowledge.
With the mighty deeds of the Lord God I will come;
I will remind them of your righteousness, yours alone.
O God, from my youth you have taught me,
and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.
So even to old age and grey hairs,
O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might to another generation,
your power to all those to come.
The psalmist here relates how he has had a living experience of the living God. He has known of the workings of the Lord in His life. “Righteous acts”, “deeds of salvation”, “mighty deeds” and “wondrous deeds” have all come within the ambit of his life-story. These experiences are not to be stored away or even worse disposed of as refuse, rather they are to be the focus of his ongoing life-story. Specifically, he is to make these things known to others.
I was particularly struck by the aspect of him having this ministry to old age and grey hairs. The fact that, what hair I have left is all grey makes such observations very personal. So I ask myself what am I here for now? The answer is that I am here to proclaim the mighty deeds of the Lord to another generation. I want to tell of the Lord’s power to all that are coming up after me.
Certain cultures and professions function around the passing on of accumulated wisdom and knowledge. In western cultures we seemed to have lost this. However, in the church and among the people of God this should be a vital aspect of how we live.
So as I set myself for further years, in the Lord’s will I set myself to passing on what I know of the Lord’s workings. I know of these through His words, through His own personal dealings with me and through what i have come to know in fellowshipping with others.
Undergirding this whole process is implication that I am to have a heart of delight in the Lord for all His workings. Surely when I consider all the works of the Lord in His gracious dealings with His people and most particularly with me, how can I be anything other than a man who delights in the mighty acts of the Lord. In the person and work of my Saviour, Jesus Christ, I see this most gloriously as He, in one act of obedience (see Rom. 5:19b), has made salvation. How wonderful is this great salvation (Heb. 2:3a).
And so all may prayings and actings and livings should be to pass on to the generation to come what I know of Him. The younger generations can never then be seen as a threat or as a nuisance, but rather as a great opportunity. They need to know of the Lord and the Lord wants them to know of Him. And He wants me and all others of grey hairs to be excited to be involved in this passing on ministry.
Oh Lord may it be that all my energies are operating through your Spirit to that end. Amen