We recently attended a 80th birthday celebration for a friend we have known for the last thirty years. About 50 people gathered in a restaurant to enjoy the occasion and we were delighted to greet several other guests we know well and be introduced to several more. After the meal a cake was produced and our friend made a short speech.
She thanked us all for coming and then said three things:
I am unhappy that I am so doubled up that I now have to use sticks to walk (her arthritis is serious);
I am very unhappy that my husband is not here. He died 10 years ago and I miss him terribly;
BUT for the last 65 years Jesus Christ has been with me every step of the way. I have to tell you that his friendship is the most important part of my life. He is the same yesterday, today and forever.
It was a very short speech but it expressed so clearly and honestly just how she felt on her big day.
It was a timely reminder as ageing so often brings poor health and bereavement that the relationship with Christ cannot be broken - the same yesterday, today and forever. Gratefully, I left the meal with that conviction ringing in my ears. There's no substitute for live testimony like that!