The Youth In My Family Now Have The Edge

The youth are taking over – at least it’s true in my family. Every year when my family gets together for Christmas we rent some ice and have a game of hockey.

We’ve been doing it for a long time now. When we started, I didn’t have to play very hard to show up the young guys.

It’s different now; each year my son and the nephews have gotten bigger, faster, stronger.

I still look forward to our little get-together but it takes a lot more out of me to keep up with them.

I guess that’s why there is so much focus on youth. They have all the potential; they are so agile; they have such great skill.

I see it in junior hockey, and especially in the annual world junior hockey tournament that’s about to start. It showcases the best young hockey talent in the world and everyone is playing for their country.

The speed at which these kids skate, and the moves they make – with and without the puck – is incredible.

That is why even the NHL is on a youth movement right now. To play in the NHL these days you have to be able to keep up with, or be better than, the 19 and 20 year olds.

Hockey highlight programs on TV show replay footage of teenagers in the NHL making incredible plays almost every night.

The youth really are taking over.

On the downside, the old guys like me are losing ground each year. We are not as fast as we once were; our hands are not what they once were.

Maybe more than all that is we don’t have the stamina or the energy we once had. I get winded quickly. I give a second thought to back-checking when the other team steals the puck.

In the friendly game we had this Christmas, I found it harder to keep the puck on my stick. Even the youngest of nephews was able to check the puck off me. I’d make a rush up the ice and that was about it for the next couple of minutes.

I remember when I was younger I could play all day and never tire. I hated having to go to the bench. I only went to give others a chance to play; I sure didn’t need the rest!

Now I take short shifts and actually enjoy my time when I’m on the bench, catching my breath. … Although with my past heart issues, I will often pace behind the bench to bring my heart rate down slowly.

Don’t get me wrong, I can still keep up, but they are starting to take over. There’s more of them and they are more dominant now.

I guess I should be sad to see the changing of the guard, knowing that it’s time to step aside for the youth movement in our family.

But you know, you also can’t help but see yourself in family. When I see my son or one of my nephews skate up the ice, I only have pride.

Here’s the thing: The more we start to age, the more we notice how the youth are taking over. But when it comes to spiritual things, we should allow the ancient one, the God of Abraham and Isaac to take over. That is the one area where youth don’t run the show. Let Christ take over your life. Here’s wishing you a very Merry Christmas.

That’s Life!


Question: What needs to move over in your life? Leave your comments below.

Up Early Christmas Morning … Again!

Well, this year I’ve come full circle. I thought it would take longer for it to happen, like maybe not until I was 80 or 85.


But no, it’s happened already.

In life we start out needing help for pretty much everything and, at the end, we also need more and more help.

They say seniors and teens have lots in common. They both can’t hear – one group because of head phones, the other because, well … they just can’t hear.

They both have no filters on what they say; they say exactly what they’re thinking.

You don’t like their music and they sure won’t tolerate yours.

Each thinks the other doesn’t know anything.They both don’t remember what you said to them five minutes ago.

And they’re both really dangerous behind the wheel of a car!

I’m not saying these things are observable right now in my life, but there is one thing.

When I was a kid I used to get up real early on Christmas morning. It was understandable; I was excited about the presents and all.

Then I went through the stage where I slept in on Christmas morning because I was tired and not that excited about what was under the tree.

But this year, in this way, I’ve reverted back to my childhood. I was up at the crack of dawn Christmas morning.

That’s right, 5:55 in the morning and I was climbing out of bed!

The difference this year was I passed by the treasures in the living room and headed straight downstairs.

I spent time alone doing my devotions and then I worked on my sermon.

We had determined the night before that we would get things rolling at our house at about 10 am so I figured I would have a few hours of productivity first.

By the time people were stirring and visions of sugar plums were starting to fade, I had a couple of hours of work completed on my sermon.

I had tried to work ahead, but I just hadn’t been able to finish my sermon before Christmas Eve for the Sunday after Christmas.

With only a couple of days in between, it meant writing on Christmas Day or Boxing Day. I didn’t want to miss out on time with my family so I thought, “I have an opportunity here to use unused, discarded time to get things done.”

I had just put the final strokes on my message when I heard some footsteps from above. For a second I thought it  was old Saint Nick making his yearly visit but then I realized it was only my wife heading into the kitchen.

As the house came alive and everyone gathered for some breakfast, I emerged from the basement, sermon complete, ready to enjoy Christmas morning with my family with no pressure hanging over my head.

But just like the young, about mid afternoon I was ready for a nap.

Here’s the thing: Often we think those early hours are time to sleep, and not good for anything. But those early quiet hours can be the most special time we can have with God.

Merry Christmas Everyone!


Question: What have you seen come full circle in your life? Leave your comment below.

Some People Don’t Age Well

You’ve heard the line, “You know you’re getting old when…” There are all kinds of ways to finish that sentence: You know you’re getting old when you and your teeth sleep separately; or, you know you’re getting old when you’re the first guy to the public urinals and the last one to leave.


Well, there is another way to tell you’re getting old, and that is go to a concert of a band from your youth. This week a friend of mine called me up and said he had two tickets to see Randy Bachman.

Now if you don’t have a clue who I’m talking about, you were born before the 1930’s, or after the 70’s and you’re not Canadian. Randy Bachman was a founding member of The Guess Who, and then went on to form another band called Bachman Turner Overdrive (BTO).

This concert was a little different, as it was at the Grand Theatre in Kingston, and not at an arena. It was a little more intimate and wasn’t about the performer playing song after song. Bachman was there to tell stories of his life in the music industry and how the songs were written.

The stories and music were amazing. When the band would start to play an old classic, I found that I kept picturing myself back in my teens. But then I looked around and saw all these old people around me.

I couldn’t get over how many old people liked “BTO”. When I say old, I don’t just mean a little grey hair – we’re talking wrinkled skin, unruly eyebrows and white hair. These people were ancient!

I felt like a kid amongst them. I was trying to figure out how much older most of the crowd was than me, and they had to average about 10 years plus.

I knew going in that the crowd wasn’t going to be young. I’d been to a Rolling Stones concert when I was about 40 and everyone there was my age or older. But that was nothing compared to this group. I saw canes, and there was a line up for the men’s washroom … when does that ever happen?!

During the intermission, I found myself staring at people trying to figure out what they might have looked like when they were in their teens or early twenties. I would look at them and squint to see if I could picture them appearing wrinkle-free.

It was about then that I realized I had been remembering myself back when I was in my teens and, in reality, I kind of fit in with these old folks. Of course, I was on the much younger side of the crowd . . . but it probably wasn’t that obvious, except to me.

I thought to myself, “What happened to these people?” Then I thought, “What happened to me?!”

. . . We’re getting old, that’s what’s happening! It was all a little disconcerting.  But the music made me feel like I was 18 again. Thanks Randy . . .  both of you.

Here’s the thing: Even though we get older and mature physically and spiritually, God still sees us as His children. We need to remember we have that kind of relationship with Him when we are with Him in prayer. Enjoy!

That’s Life!


Question: What experience of the past causes you to reminisce about how your life with Christ has changed?  Leave your comment below.