(This is a New Year's reflection from Lester Gingold, longtime member of Church of the Holy Communion.)
January, named for the Roman God looking forward and backward, reminds me each year to be grateful for the past and to hopefully look for a successful year to come.
Reaching my 96th year on January 1 is certainly a milestone, and as Joyce and I awaken each day, we say how blessed we are to still be on this planet and to have survived 67 years together.
At the conclusion of a recent WKNO-TV show, Cris Hardaway asked me to sum up my philosophy of such a long life. I had not been asked that question previously, but I replied: “You’re never too old to learn. You’re never too old to love, and you’re never too old to pray.” I have heard from many listeners to that program, signifying a very positive response. Since that time, however, I have often thought of other issues that one is never too old to consider. I have added these to my list, and perhaps you may consider some in your own personal philosophy.
You’re never too old to forgive.
You’re never too old praise.
You’re never too old to counsel.
You’re never too old to hug.
You’re never too old to laugh and cry.
You’re never too old to perform random acts of kindness.
As I try to remember these ideas each day, I am reminded that we do not grow old, but we become old by not growing. To grow is not a question of size, but of depth. We cannot become passive in accepting our infirmities but seek ways to continue to use of our God-given talents. We all have talents, many times unrecognized. The talent to remember what we are never too old to do is critical. The talent of accepting our disabilities with grace and showing appreciation for the caregivers in our lives is more important than ever for those of us fortunate to be in the tenth decade of life. Gratitude will be a hallmark of my life at age 96.