4. I am old.
I babysat my two youngest grandchildren yesterday, one two-months-short-of-two and one who just turned six.
“When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” 1 Cor. 13:11
When I was a child I played as a child, tumbled, twisted, and hopped around as a child. At age three I was jumping down from the hayloft of Grandpa’s old red barn, led by my adventurous brother Jim, eleven months older than I. We’d run into the barn, climb the ladder in the chicken coop fast as our little legs could take us up to the hayloft, and jump about twelve feet down to the ground. Then do it all again.
Now my grandchildren can’t understand why Grandma doesn’t want to jump on the trampoline with them.
“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.” 1Cor. 10:23
All things are lawful to me, but my body doesn’t flex that much anymore. All things are lawful to me, but I will be sore for days after. All things are lawful for me, but my muscles may sprain or tear. (One day, hurrying home from work, I tore the muscle in my leg just stepping off a curb; I couldn’t put weight on that leg for a month after.)
Yes, it would be okay for Grandma to jump on the trampoline, but the rebound might go on for days as my arthritic joints protest being treated to pre-school activities. As it is, my lower back is feeling a few twinges after from lifting and carrying a chunky little almost-two-year old.
When I was a child I ran after other children all over the playground. Now that I’m old I can see why Grandpas & Grandmas are happiest tending their gardens. Plants may be a lot of work, but at least you don’t have to catch them first.
I love my grandchildren and count it a blessing that I can spend time with them, but they do remind me that I’m not a child anymore.