What is most important in life? Lessons from my bald head.
As a young boy, I used to look at people going bald and say ,’Wow! that’s rough, they look strange, at least that will never happen to me!’
And then not too long ago, a few people started to make comments (I was certain they were pulling my leg!) about things thinning out on top. I brushed it aside as I knew I was never going to be that person whose head looked like a heli pad, who used more sunscreen on their head than their face, shone it with shoe polish or was called roll on!
And then the fateful day arrived – I saw some photos of my head from behind and at first I didnt believe it was me, it couldn’t be, and then that sinking feeling started to rise within me – my worst fears were coming true – baldness had begun to take hold of me. The picture below isn’t my head – but I am heading (no pun intended!) that direction in not too long!
A few months on from that moment, I feel like I have come to terms with having to shave my head in the coming years as I embrace baldness! I am also hugely thankful that I have a wife who loves me in-spite of it and hasn’t forced me to get implants or permanently wear a cap!
BUT – I feel like the Lord has used this process to once again challenge me to lift my eyes past this lifetime and look towards eternity. The bottom line is that I am getting older, and I am not going to live forever on this earth! As a young boy, I never felt I would get older – but slowly and surely – the aging process affects all of us. It might be in loss of hair, it might be in stiffness after exercise, it might be in sagging skin or a wrinkled face – it is something that begins from our birth date and continues until we leave this earth. We will never stop the inevitable – no matter how much wealth or time we poor into our bodies, we will not live forever on earth.
Coming to grips with the aging process is healthy, and for that reason I am grateful for going bald. It helps us to see that this life is going to end! No matter how bullet proof we feel, no matter how healthy we are – each of us will stand at the doorway into the next life at some point.
And so we have a choice. Do we throw everything we have at preserving this life, maxing out our enjoyment, amassing wealth and protecting our little empire? Or do we really assess our short life in terms of eternity in order to make sure that we live for that which is most important?
The bible is clear about what we should focus on. Here are just a few challenging verses:
So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. 2Corinthians4vs16-18
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your[a] life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Colossians3vs1-4
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew6vs19-21
Those are some pretty challenging passages of scripture and should make us think regardless of where we are on the journey of faith. And so I want to challenge you today – as you look at your body, as you realize afresh that you are getting older and that your life will not last forever on earth – let that fuel you to explore and live for what matters most in life.
If you are reading this and you would say you don’t have a faith, that your focus is only to live for the short pleasures of this lifetime – I want to challenge you to look deeper, to explore, to ask the tough questions. God is faithful and promises in Jeremiah29vs13, ‘You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.’ So go for it in seeking with an open heart – I know He is there to be found.
For those of you who are Christ followers, who do have a faith in Jesus Christ – let the aging process remind and challenge you that this life is not the end, that there is a world to come that will last forever! That we can and should live our lives on earth for the things that truly matter.
Thanks so much for reading – here’s to embracing my bald head – and whatever aging is taking place on your body too!
In light of eternity,