Seniors deserve love, attention

By Joan Clayton: Religion Columnist

One of our greatest resources is our older population.

Despite years of experience to contribute to society, I think we sometimes take them for granted. I salute the many agencies that contribute opportunities for senior citizens.

However, there may be many who have felt isolated. As people get older there is a tendency to withdraw from society. Shut-ins can no longer socialize and are dependent on others for fellowship.

Daily contact with people is so important and stimulation is vital as are proper nutrition and exercise. I watched my aunts improve mentally and physically when they had daily contact with people. So let’s have a “shut-in” day for those who need our friendship.

When that “housebound” person knows you will be visiting on a certain day, he or she looks forward to it with eager anticipation. Take a new baby in the family along with you and watch their eyes light up. Allow your grandchildren to help make a cake or cookies. You will be teaching them compassion.

Senior citizens have brought us many blessings. Now it’s our time to bless them.

To those who are able, many activities are available to keep active and involved. My 92 years young legally blind aunt lived alone. Her days were spent gardening and making lap robes for nursing homes. She found an ingenious way to thread her machine needle by “feeling.” She made and donated little crafts to “Good Will” industries.

She was so busy in her church she never had time to think about herself or her condition. A lady came weekly to read the Bible to Aunt Mary and she looked forward for that special day.

Many seniors pursue a hobby that keeps them involved with people. Some join a bowling league or take up square dancing. Others take up oil painting or a quilting class.

One of my older friends has a Bible study in her home. Another lady has organized a prayer group.

Older Christians are filled with spiritual growth. They are of great value in telling grandchildren Bible stories and of course, they are never too old to pray.

Psalm 92:12-15 has a lot to say about older people:
“But good people will grow like palm trees; they will be tall like the cedars of Lebanon. Like trees planted in the Temple of the Lord, they

will grow strong in the courtyards of our God. When they are old, they will still produce fruit; they will be healthy and fresh. They will say that the Lord is good. He is my Rock, and there is no wrong in him.” (NCV)

“Miss Bea,” a resident at the rest home, was the home’s cheerleader. She welcomed my aunts and always had a story with a happy ending. “I am the happiest person here. You know why? Because I have Jesus in my heart,” and she hugged herself.

Many weeks later Kallie, our youngest granddaughter, expressed the same feeling. Kallie had her arms around herself and when I asked about it, she replied,

“I’m hugging Jesus. He’s in there you know.”

Kallie and Miss Bea have a lot in common.

Speak life to those older precious people. If you can hold one’s hand, hug or even touch a shoulder, you are blessed.

Bless someone today.