This old man, he played 10

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Rev. Walter Klockers

Three weeks ago, I tweaked my left knee while in the backyard garden. Last week, I turned my right ankle while I was in McCosh Park, exploring the edges of the lake.

My mind is telling me that my body can do the things I used to in the past. On the other hand, my body is giving me signals that it is no longer capable of such things. In any event, I need to be more careful.

It doesnít seem that long ago. I used to play basketball, but I quit doing so in my 30ís. I loved playing in church softball leagues, but I hung up the cleats when I was 50.

A year ago, I quit playing table tennis. The closest club is in Richland. So, distance was a factor. It didnít help matters that younger players were beginning to whip this old man. My feet simply donít move as fast as they used to and this was becoming frustrating for me.

Sadly, I found it necessary to give up all these things as Iíve advanced in years.

On the flip side, I have been thankful for what Iíve gained in knowledge during my lifetime. I have been married to Jeanne for over 35 years, so I know some things about marriage. Iíve served as a minister for over 28 years, so I know something about that. I have been a parent for over 27 years, and one of our adult children has special needs Ė ditto. Iíve lived in several states, served in the Coast Guard, gone to college, met a lot of people, and done a lot of things.

I can draw upon my life experiences when I listen to and reflect with others. This is of great worth. One might call this collective wisdom. It isnít perfect by any means, but proves to be quite useful in talking with others and comparing notes.

This brings a question to mind. Why canít we have a younger body and wisdom at the same time?

The obvious answer is that life doesnít work that way.

For me, I donít think that this is a bad thing, that Iíll always be lacking something. As a result, Iíve had more reason to talk to God about these things. If I didnít have as many issues, I wouldnít do so as much. So, Iím good with it. How about you?

Walter is pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church and has served as parish pastor for more than 25 years.

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