A couple of months ago, I began going to physical therapy three times a week. Iíd like to say itís because of an old sports injury, or a wild freak-accident Iíd been in, or better yet, that Iíd hurt myself rescuing a helpless kitten escape a burning building. You know, something cool like that, but that wouldnít be the truth.
Sadly, the truth is much less thrilling than any of that. The truth is that I turned 40 this year. Yep, the big 4 0. It is no longer possible to deny that I am middle-aged. But all in all, that hasnít bothered me too much. After all, my experience has shown me that each decade of my life is better than the previous one.
With maturity though, also comes some unwanted things. Things like aches, pains, strains and cracks. Things like not being as fast, fit or flexible. And the understanding of what itisís are: arthritis, tendonitis, bursitis. Iím now learning the importance of core conditioning and strength training, not for vanity sake, but for health sake.
Some of this is to be expected after all, because we do have earthly bodies that are already in a state of decay and dying to this life. There is no fountain of youth, magical pill, or expensive surgery that will grant us immortality. Unless we meet our demise early in life (which is always possible), old age will creep upon and overtake us. That is merely biology.
But one day, our bodies will last, and we will be pain and illness free. God has prepared for us an eternal and glorified body, to be dwelled in when this fleshly body wears out. One day the aches will be gone, a distant memory of a time when things werenít perfect and pure. I love the hope, assurance and comfort I get from the following passage of Scripture:
ďFor we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down (that is, when we die and leave this earthly body), we will have a house in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long to put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. For we will put on heavenly bodies; we will not be spirits without bodies. While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but itís not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life. God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.Ē ~ 2 Cor. 5:1-5
Until that time comes, however I intend to do what I can to be and live healthy. Simple activities like eating healthy, stretching, strengthening, and getting enough water and sleep are great ways to put off the inevitability of old age. Yes, it will come, but I will not just sit back and let it overtake me. I will not go gentle.
Author's Note: The title and last sentence are from a poem I've loved since high school. It is Do Not Go Gentle into that Good Night by Dylan Thomas
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