Eight years ago this week I had an email that underlined how God has ‘works’ for His children to do, right to the very end of their lives. Not just in the early or middle years, or even in the early retirement years. But right up to the day He takes you Home. Since then I’ve written a book about it, What’s Age Got To do With It,’ written countless blogs and articles, and given talks all over the country.
The verse is Ephesians 2:10. ‘For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.’ In another version it says that ‘He has equipped us’.
The email was from Georgina Lansdell, then Manager of the domiciliary care team at Royd Court, our retirement housing in Yorkshire. It was about a residents called Jean Slack. Georgina said,
‘Jean came to us in 2011 and at that time she was walking, very frail but did very well. In July/August 2012 she was really poorly but pulled through for her 97th birthday. Although Jean is constantly cared for in bed she is a lady who has a testimony for everyone. She reads her Bible every day as well as a great deal of other reading materials and in that I mean some really deep books. She plans her reading her television and her meals she knows everything. If we don’t get her up for 30 minutes each day she tells me off because she gets behind with her daily readings.
‘Recently, she had been really poorly and we thought we were going to lose her, and she told us all she was going home to be with the Lord. She had said her goodbyes to her family and she spent hours reciting the Scriptures. She had a nurse come in to assess her for end of life medication. When the nurse came in Jean took her by the hand and asked her if she went to church. The nurse said, ‘no’, and Jean said to her, ‘well I’m a christian and I know where I’m going when I die, you need to start going to church and find Jesus.’
‘It made me think how we never retire in the Lord’s work even on our death bed.’ It was an example of Ephesians 2:10.
In the event Jean recovered, and lived to be 100, still talking about Jesus whenever she could, doing the ‘good works’ that God brought to her!