Living Well at 40 to Live Well at 80

posted in: Books | 0

I love being surprised by books.  And I’m not 40 (yet), but my husband is past this mark.  And thanks to Crossway for this title.  I was intending on reading it right after the new year, but that never happened, but it has been perfect timing for me to pick up this book.

John Dunlop has written a great book, mostly for senior citizens, on how to live well and finish strong for the glory of God.  In Wellness for the Glory of God, Dr. Dunlop explores how people above the age of 40 can live well so that they finish well – not only in health, but in many other areas as well.

He does cover physical wellness.  He doesn’t talk about a particular diet, but he does talk about how our aging bodies need certain things to make them work to their highest capacity.  He doesn’t talk over his readers’ heads, but instead offers illustrations and practical steps to stir them up to good deeds in this area.

He covers mental wellness.  I actually think this chapter would be best read by children of aging parents.  This talks a lot of how to keep the mind sharp.  Again, a very practical chapter.

One thing he covers is social wellness.  He offers some advice to the aging adult – focus on others.  He gives tips on how to focus on others, ministering to them, pouring into them, getting out of your comfort zone, passing on knowledge, playing with kids and grandkids.  This is not only social wellness, but is greatly connected to the physical and mental wellness too.

In financial wellness – he covers tips on wills, leaving good financial legacies for your families, and not piles of debt to be a burden to those after you.  HE talks about giving and how that can be a blessing not only to you but also to the ones you give.

Spiritual Wellness is important.  Some aging adults find it difficult to physically be involved in church activities, but he encourages them to not their love of the Word grow dim.  Bible studies, prayer groups in your home, prayer ministries, mentoring.  Don’t spend all of your retirement years thinking you already know everything about the Word, but spend this time deepening your walk with the Lord.

Emotional Wellness concludes the book’s sections.  I know so many elderly who may struggle with two of the things Dunlop mentions: anger and boredom.  Forgiveness is such a crucial thing to emotional wellbeing.  Boredom should never be the case because this world is so big and we have so much at our fingertips.

What I figured from this book is that I need to start pursuing all these areas now – not wait until I’m 60 and my kids are in college.  Start taking these tips to heart and act upon them.  Be healthy.  Be giving.  Be smart with my finances.  And also that God intends us to be whole beings.  If we are healthy on the outside, but never help anyone or pray to our Creator, then our physical wellness doesn’t get us very far.

Whatever stage of life you are in, seek out how to best live ALL of it for God’s glory.