It happened in Sunday School class, of all places!
The class consists of adults of varying ages. So I’m sure it is sometimes difficult to make the lesson applicable to everyone in the class. There are grandparents and parents with young children and teens to finish raising. Most of the class members are still working. Some are counting the days until their long anticipated retirement. Others have retired. Some of those retirees are wondering what they can do to fill their days.
So, it has to be a challenge to make the discussion relevant to everyone.
This lesson was about Mary, a young lady who was pregnant with Jesus, and her cousin, Elizabeth, who, though long past normal child-bearing age, was also pregnant with John, who would be the forerunner of Jesus. These two spent three months together during their pregnancies and were an encouragement, each to the other.
So, it led easily to a discussion of how different generations relate to one another.
Playing on that aspect of the lesson, our teacher was trying to make a point about generational differences, likenesses, and how each can be an encouragement to the other. He specifically directed his question to me for the viewpoint of an “elderly” person.
I took offense! Now, I know I shouldn’t have, but I’m just so very human! Sorry about that!
Instead of answering his question, I said, “Elderly? You called me elderly!” His shocked expression said a mouthful! After all, he was teaching about each generation needing the other and how the older generation has much to contribute to the younger in their lives as well as to children and youth. And this was a perfectly good approach to the discussion.
But, though I was thrilled to get my Golden Buckeye card when I moved back to Ohio and to be eligible for senior discounts, I had not mentally assessed myself as now being past just the “senior citizen” classification. Come to think of it, it’s been a long while since any clerk has challenged my request for a discount. In fact, I often get the discount without asking. So I should have been aware!
Still, I reserved the term elderly for those I consider OLD, I mean REALLY OLD!
Later in the class, I was able to contribute a thought or two to the discussion, but I believe I sapped much of the energy of the class and the teacher by my outburst.
I was wrong! Now here I am writing about my gaff for all my readers to see and to know of a certainty that, when I mess up, I really mess up!
I am so very thankful that Jesus’ shed blood avails for me – daily! Even when I go back and do the same wrong things over again, like activating my mouth before I put my brain in gear, He is faithful to forgive me again when I ask.
This very same Jesus whose birth we celebrate at Christmas time is the Example for our lives. He enables us to live for Him and He forgives when we mess up. His blood shed so many years ago paid the price for our mess-ups, our sin! When we accept Jesus, God sees us through His Son, cleansed in the blood of his only begotten Son and we are forgiven.
Be sure you know this Jesus of the Christmas season, this Jesus of Calvary, this Jesus resurrected, living and coming again!