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Copy and paste to create a documentRespect and Honor 3 The principal Hebrew word for honor literally means

heaviness. A person who is hon ored is regarded as being weighty or as amounting to something. The same Hebrew word is also often translated in the Scriptures as glory, which further indicates the high regard shown to the one being honored. (Gen. 45:13) The Greek word tran slated honor in the Bible conveys the sense of esteem, value, preciousness. (Luke 14:10) Yes, those we honor are precious, valuable to us. 4 What is involved in honoring others? It starts with respect. In fact, the word s honor and respect are often used together because they are closely related. Honor is the manifestation, or outward demonstration, of respect. In other words, resp ect refers primarily to how we view our brother while honor refers to how we tre at our brother. Caring for the ElderlyA Christian Responsibility Even to ones old age I am the same One; and to ones gray-headedness I myself shall keep bearing up.ISAIAH 46:4. DEVOTED parents nurture their children through infancy, childhood, and the teena ge years. Even when young people reach adulthood and have their own families, th eir fathers and mothers continue to give them loving attention and support. 2 Although there is a limit to what humans can do for their children, our heaven ly Father is always able to give his faithful servants loving attention and supp ort. Addressing his chosen people of ancient times, Jehovah stated: Even to ones o ld age I am the same One; and to ones gray-headedness I myself shall keep bearing up. (Isaiah 46:4) What reassuring words these are for older Christians! Jehovah does not abandon those who remain loyal to him. Rather, he promises to sustain, support, and guide them throughout their lives, even into old age.Psalm 48:14. 3 How can we imitate Jehovahs loving concern for the elderly? (Ephesians 5:1, 2) Let us consider ways in which children, congregation overseers, and individual C hristians can care for the needs of senior members of our worldwide brotherhood. Our Responsibility as Children 4 Honor your father and your mother. (Ephesians 6:2; Exodus 20:12) With this simpl e yet profound quotation from the Hebrew Scriptures, the apostle Paul reminded c hildren of the responsibility they have toward their parents. But how do these w ords apply to caring for the elderly? A heartwarming example from pre-Christian times will help us answer this question. 5 For more than 20 years, Joseph had no contact with his elderly father, the pat riarch Jacob. However, Joseph had evidently not lost his filial love for Jacob. In fact, when Joseph revealed his true identity to his brothers, he asked: Is my father still alive? (Genesis 43:7, 27; 45:3) At that time, the land of Canaan was in the grip of famine. Thus, Joseph sent word to his father, saying: Come down t o me. Do not delay. And you must dwell in the land of Goshen, and you must conti nue near me . . . And I will supply you with food there. (Genesis 45:9-11; 47:12) Yes, honoring aged parents includes protecting them and providing for them mate rially when they are not in a position to care for themselves. (1 Samuel 22:1-4; John 19:25-27) Joseph gladly accepted this responsibility How Elders Show That They Care 9 Near the end of his long life, Jacob referred to Jehovah as the true God who ha s been shepherding me during all my existence until this day. (Genesis 48:15) Tod ay, Jehovah shepherds his earthly servants by means of Christian overseers, or e lders, under the direction of his Son, Jesus Christ, the chief shepherd. (1 Peter 5:2-4) How can overseers imitate Jehovah as they care for the older members of t he flock? 10 Shortly after the inception of the Christian congregation, the apostles appoi nted seven certified men . . . full of spirit and wisdom to supervise the daily dis tribution of food among needy Christian widows. (Acts 6:1-6) Later, Paul instruct ed the overseer Timothy to put exemplary aged widows on the list of those who we re entitled to receive material help. (1 Timothy 5:3, 9, 10) Likewise, congregat ion overseers today willingly coordinate practical assistance for elderly Christ

ians when this is necessary. However, more is involved in caring for faithful ol der ones. 11 Near the end of his earthly ministry, Jesus sat down at the temple and began o bserving how the crowd was dropping money into the treasury chests. Then someone caught his attention. Says the account: A poor widow came and dropped in two smal l coins, which have very little value. Jesus called his disciples to him and told them: Truly I say to you that this poor widow dropped in more than all those dro pping money into the treasury chests; for they all dropped in out of their surpl us, but she, out of her want, dropped in all of what she had, her whole living. ( Mark 12:41-44) In monetary terms, the widows contribution was small, but Jesus kn ew how much his heavenly Father values such whole-souled expressions of devotion . Regardless of the poor widows age, Jesus did not overlook what she did. 12 Like Jesus, Christian overseers do not overlook what the elderly do to promot e true worship. Elders have reason to commend older ones for their share in the ministry, for their participation in meetings, for their positive influence in t he congregation, and for their endurance. A sincere word of encouragement can he lp the elderly find cause for exultation in their sacred service, thus avoiding fr ustrating comparisons with what other Christians are able to do or with their ow n past accomplishments.Galatians 6:4. 13 Elders can acknowledge the valuable contribution made by older Christians by drawing on their experience and talents. Exemplary elderly ones may occasionally be used in demonstrations or interviews. The audience really sits up and listens when I interview an older brother or sister who has reared children in the trut h, observes one elder. Elders in another congregation report that a 71-year-old p ioneer sister has been successful in helping Kingdom publishers to become regula r in field service. She also encourages them to do the basics, such as reading the Bible and the daily text and then meditating on what they read. 14 Elders also value the contribution of older fellow overseers. Jos, who is in h is 70s and has served as an elder for decades, recently underwent extensive surge ry. Faced with a long convalescence, he thought of relinquishing his privilege o f serving as a presiding overseer. The reaction of the other elders surprised me, says Jos. Instead of accepting my suggestion, they asked what practical help I nee ded in order to continue caring for my responsibilities. With the assistance of a younger elder, Jos was able to continue serving joyfully as presiding overseer, and this has been a blessing to the congregation. A fellow elder states: The brot hers greatly appreciate Joss work as an elder. They love and respect him for his e xperience and example of faith. He enriches our congregation. Caring for One Another 15 It is not only children with aged parents and appointed servants who should b e concerned about the elderly. Comparing the Christian congregation to the human body, Paul wrote: God compounded the body, giving honor more abundant to the par t which had a lack, so that there should be no division in the body, but that it s members should have the same care for one another. (1 Corinthians 12:24, 25) An other translation reads: All the different parts of [the body are] to make each o thers welfare their common care. (Knox) For the Christian congregation to function harmoniously, each member must be concerned about the well-being of his fellow believers, including the elderly.Galatians 6:2. 16 Christian meetings afford a fine opportunity to show our interest in the elde rly. (Philippians 2:4; Hebrews 10:24, 25) Do we take time to converse with older ones on such occasions? While it may be appropriate to inquire about their phys ical well-being, could we impart some spiritual gift, perhaps by sharing an upbuil ding experience or a Scriptural thought? Since some older ones have limited mobi lity, it would be kind to go to them rather than expect them to come to us. If h earing is a problem, we may need to speak slowly and enunciate clearly. And if t here is to be a true interchange of encouragement, we must listen attentively to w hat the older person says.Romans 1:11, 12. 17 What if certain older ones cannot attend Christian meetings? James 1:27 shows that it is our duty to look after orphans and widows in their tribulation. One me aning of the Greek verb translated to look after is to visit. (Acts 15:36) And how t he elderly appreciate our visits! While imprisoned in Rome about 65 C.E., the age

d man Paul found himself practically alone. He longed to see his fellow worker Ti mothy and wrote: Do your utmost to come to me shortly. (Philemon 9; 2 Timothy 1:3, 4; 4:9) Although they are not literally prisoners, some elderly ones are houseb ound because of health problems. In effect, they may be saying, Please, do your b est to visit me soon. Are we responding to such appeals? 18 Never underestimate the beneficial effects of visiting an elderly spiritual b rother or sister. When a Christian named Onesiphorus was in Rome, he diligently looked for Paul, found him, and thereafter often brought him refreshment. (2 Timot hy 1:16, 17) I love spending time with younger ones, says one elderly sister. What I like most is that they treat me like a member of their family. It lifts my spi rits. Another older Christian states: I really appreciate it when someone sends me a card, calls me on the phone for just a few minutes, or visits me for a while. It is like a breath of fresh air. Jehovah Rewards Those Who Care 19 Caring for older ones results in many blessings. Associating with the elderly and being able to draw on their knowledge and experience is in itself a privile ge. Caregivers experience the greater happiness that comes from giving, as well as a sense of accomplishment and inner peace from having fulfilled their Scriptu ral responsibility. (Acts 20:35) Moreover, those who care for the elderly need n ot fear that they themselves will be abandoned in their later years. Gods Word as sures us: The generous soul will itself be made fat, and the one freely watering others will himself also be freely watered.Proverbs 11:25. 20 Jehovah rewards God-fearing children, overseers, and other caring Christians for unselfishly tending to the needs of elderly fellow believers. Such a spirit is in line with this proverb: He that is showing favor to the lowly one is lendin g to Jehovah, and his treatment He will repay to him. (Proverbs 19:17) If love pr ompts us to show favor to the lowly and the poor, God considers such giving to b e a loan that he repays with blessings. He also repays us for giving loving care to our elderly fellow worshipers, many of whom are poor respecting the world but rich in faith.James 2:5. 21 How generous Gods repayment is! It includes everlasting life. For the vast maj ority of Jehovahs servants, that will be life eternal on a paradise earth, where the effects of inherited sin will be eliminated and faithful elderly ones will e njoy the restoration of their youthful vigor. (Revelation 21:3-5) While we await that blessed time, may we continue to fulfill our Christian responsibility to c are for the elderly. How Elders Show That They Care 9 Near the end of his long life, Jacob referred to Jehovah as the true God who ha s been shepherding me during all my existence until this day. (Genesis 48:15) Tod ay, Jehovah shepherds his earthly servants by means of Christian overseers, or e lders, under the direction of his Son, Jesus Christ, the chief shepherd. (1 Peter 5:2-4) How can overseers imitate Jehovah as they care for the older members of t he flock? 10 Shortly after the inception of the Christian congregation, the apostles appoi nted seven certified men . . . full of spirit and wisdom to supervise the daily dis tribution of food among needy Christian widows. (Acts 6:1-6) Later, Paul instruct ed the overseer Timothy to put exemplary aged widows on the list of those who we re entitled to receive material help. (1 Timothy 5:3, 9, 10) Likewise, congregat ion overseers today willingly coordinate practical assistance for elderly Christ ians when this is necessary. However, more is involved in caring for faithful ol der ones. 11 Near the end of his earthly ministry, Jesus sat down at the temple and began o bserving how the crowd was dropping money into the treasury chests. Then someone caught his attention. Says the account: A poor widow came and dropped in two smal l coins, which have very little value. Jesus called his disciples to him and told them: Truly I say to you that this poor widow dropped in more than all those dro pping money into the treasury chests; for they all dropped in out of their surpl us, but she, out of her want, dropped in all of what she had, her whole living. (

Mark 12:41-44) In monetary terms, the widows contribution was small, but Jesus kn ew how much his heavenly Father values such whole-souled expressions of devotion . Regardless of the poor widows age, Jesus did not overlook what she did. 12 Like Jesus, Christian overseers do not overlook what the elderly do to promot e true worship. Elders have reason to commend older ones for their share in the ministry, for their participation in meetings, for their positive influence in t he congregation, and for their endurance. A sincere word of encouragement can he lp the elderly find cause for exultation in their sacred service, thus avoiding fr ustrating comparisons with what other Christians are able to do or with their ow n past accomplishments.Galatians 6:4. 13 Elders can acknowledge the valuable contribution made by older Christians by drawing on their experience and talents. Exemplary elderly ones may occasionally be used in demonstrations or interviews. The audience really sits up and listens when I interview an older brother or sister who has reared children in the trut h, observes one elder. Elders in another congregation report that a 71-year-old p ioneer sister has been successful in helping Kingdom publishers to become regula r in field service. She also encourages them to do the basics, such as reading the Bible and the daily text and then meditating on what they read. 14 Elders also value the contribution of older fellow overseers. Jos, who is in h is 70s and has served as an elder for decades, recently underwent extensive surge ry. Faced with a long convalescence, he thought of relinquishing his privilege o f serving as a presiding overseer. The reaction of the other elders surprised me, says Jos. Instead of accepting my suggestion, they asked what practical help I nee ded in order to continue caring for my responsibilities. With the assistance of a younger elder, Jos was able to continue serving joyfully as presiding overseer, and this has been a blessing to the congregation. A fellow elder states: The brot hers greatly appreciate Joss work as an elder. They love and respect him for his e xperience and example of faith. He enriches our congregation. Caring for One Another 15 It is not only children with aged parents and appointed servants who should b e concerned about the elderly. Comparing the Christian congregation to the human body, Paul wrote: God compounded the body, giving honor more abundant to the par t which had a lack, so that there should be no division in the body, but that it s members should have the same care for one another. (1 Corinthians 12:24, 25) An other translation reads: All the different parts of [the body are] to make each o thers welfare their common care. (Knox) For the Christian congregation to function harmoniously, each member must be concerned about the well-being of his fellow believers, including the elderly.Galatians 6:2. 16 Christian meetings afford a fine opportunity to show our interest in the elde rly. (Philippians 2:4; Hebrews 10:24, 25) Do we take time to converse with older ones on such occasions? While it may be appropriate to inquire about their phys ical well-being, could we impart some spiritual gift, perhaps by sharing an upbuil ding experience or a Scriptural thought? Since some older ones have limited mobi lity, it would be kind to go to them rather than expect them to come to us. If h earing is a problem, we may need to speak slowly and enunciate clearly. And if t here is to be a true interchange of encouragement, we must listen attentively to w hat the older person says.Romans 1:11, 12. 17 What if certain older ones cannot attend Christian meetings? James 1:27 shows that it is our duty to look after orphans and widows in their tribulation. One me aning of the Greek verb translated to look after is to visit. (Acts 15:36) And how t he elderly appreciate our visits! While imprisoned in Rome about 65 C.E., the age d man Paul found himself practically alone. He longed to see his fellow worker Ti mothy and wrote: Do your utmost to come to me shortly. (Philemon 9; 2 Timothy 1:3, 4; 4:9) Although they are not literally prisoners, some elderly ones are houseb ound because of health problems. In effect, they may be saying, Please, do your b est to visit me soon. Are we responding to such appeals? 18 Never underestimate the beneficial effects of visiting an elderly spiritual b rother or sister. When a Christian named Onesiphorus was in Rome, he diligently looked for Paul, found him, and thereafter often brought him refreshment. (2 Timot hy 1:16, 17) I love spending time with younger ones, says one elderly sister. What

I like most is that they treat me like a member of their family. It lifts my spi rits. Another older Christian states: I really appreciate it when someone sends me a card, calls me on the phone for just a few minutes, or visits me for a while. It is like a breath of fresh air. Jehovah Rewards Those Who Care 19 Caring for older ones results in many blessings. Associating with the elderly and being able to draw on their knowledge and experience is in itself a privile ge. Caregivers experience the greater happiness that comes from giving, as well as a sense of accomplishment and inner peace from having fulfilled their Scriptu ral responsibility. (Acts 20:35) Moreover, those who care for the elderly need n ot fear that they themselves will be abandoned in their later years. Gods Word as sures us: The generous soul will itself be made fat, and the one freely watering others will himself also be freely watered.Proverbs 11:25. 20 Jehovah rewards God-fearing children, overseers, and other caring Christians for unselfishly tending to the needs of elderly fellow believers. Such a spirit is in line with this proverb: He that is showing favor to the lowly one is lendin g to Jehovah, and his treatment He will repay to him. (Proverbs 19:17) If love pr ompts us to show favor to the lowly and the poor, God considers such giving to b e a loan that he repays with blessings. He also repays us for giving loving care to our elderly fellow worshipers, many of whom are poor respecting the world but rich in faith.James 2:5. 21 How generous Gods repayment is! It includes everlasting life. For the vast maj ority of Jehovahs servants, that will be life eternal on a paradise earth, where the effects of inherited sin will be eliminated and faithful elderly ones will e njoy the restoration of their youthful vigor. (Revelation 21:3-5) While we await that blessed time, may we continue to fulfill our Christian responsibility to c are for the elderly. Why Honor the Elderly? ALONG the coast of California, U.S.A., is one of the worlds most photographed tre es. It is known as the Lone Cypress. Reportedly, this tree is over 250 years old . Noted for its endurance, this beautiful tree has received attention in several ways. For instance, it has been fortified with supportive cables and with stone work around its base. The Lone Cypress may remind us of the older Christians in our midst, who show re markable endurance. One outstanding way that they do this is by proclaiming the good news. The prophet Joel foretold that old men would declare the Bibles message. (Joel 2:28-32; Acts 2:16-21) Just think of the countless hours such ones spend earnestly helping others to learn about the good news of the kingdom! (Matt. 24:14 ) Some of these elderly Kingdom proclaimers have endured years of persecution or other difficulties. If a mere cypress tree is noted for endurance and is fortif ied with stonework and cables, how much more do the older ones among us deserve to be recognized and treated with dignity and honor! Jehovah God commanded his ancient people: Before gray hair you should rise up, an d you must show consideration for the person of an old man. (Lev. 19:32) Among Je hovahs servants today, we find excellent examples of faithful ones who have been w alking with God for decades. (Mic. 6:8) As they continue applying Scriptural prin ciples, their gray-headedness is indeed a crown of beauty.Prov. 16:31. The apostle Paul instructed young Timothy: Do not severely criticize an older man . Rather, Timothy was to entreat him as a father and older women as mothers. (1 Tim. 5:1, 2) In effect, Timothy was to rise up before gray hair. Clearly, then, Jehovah expects our manner of speech to reflect such honor. In showing honor to one another take the lead, states Romans 12:10. Overseers in t he congregation certainly show honor to elderly Christians. But all of us are to take the lead in showing honor to one another. Of course, family members have a special responsibility toward their parents and grandparents. In the case of the Lone Cypress, people have looked for ways to h elp preserve it, and they continue to do so. Surely, then, we should look for wa ys to help preserve the dignity of our aging parents and grandparents. For examp

le, being a good listener will keep us from insisting on doing things our own wa y without regard for their feelings.Prov. 23:22; 1 Tim. 5:4. The elderly ones among us are very precious to Jehovah. He does not abandon them . (Ps. 71:18) The true God actually fortifies them to keep on serving him faithf ully. May we too continue to support and honor the elderly. Jehovah Tenderly Cares for His Elderly Servants God is not unrighteous so as to forget your work and the love you showed for his name.HEB. 6:10. WHEN you see elderly ones in the congregation who have white hair, are you remin ded of an account in the Bible book of Daniel? In a vision that He gave to Danie l, Jehovah God portrayed himself as having white hair. Daniel wrote: I kept on be holding until there were thrones placed and the Ancient of Days sat down. His cl othing was white just like snow, and the hair of his head was like clean wool.Dan. 7:9. 2 In its natural state, wool often has a warm white color. Thus, white hair and the title Ancient of Days call attention to Gods great age and wisdom, both of whic h merit our deepest respect. How, then, does the Ancient of Days, Jehovah, view faithful older men and women? Gods Word says that gray-headedness is a crown of be auty when it is found in the way of righteousness. (Prov. 16:31) Yes, if a faithf ul Christian has come to have gray or white hair, such a mature appearance is be autiful in Gods sight. Do you share Jehovahs view of your older brothers and siste rs? Why So Precious? 3 Among such beloved older servants of God are members of the Governing Body of Jehovahs Witnesses, current and former traveling overseers, zealous pioneers, and mature Kingdom publishersbrothers and sisters who serve faithfully in our congre gations. You may know some who have zealously preached the good news for decades and whose good examples have helped to motivate younger ones and mold their liv es. Some older fellow believers have carried heavy loads of responsibility and h ave endured persecution for the sake of the good news. Jehovah and the faithful a nd discreet slave deeply appreciate all their past and present contributions to t he Kingdom work.Matt. 24:45. 4 Such faithful seniors merit the gratitude and respect of other servants of Jeh ovah God. In fact, Gods Law given through Moses links consideration and respect f or the elderly with the fear of Jehovah. (Lev. 19:32) We should regularly pray f or these faithful ones and thank God for their labors of love. The apostle Paul prayed for his dear coworkers, young and old.Read 1 Thessalonians 1:2, 3. 5 Furthermore, all in the congregation can benefit from associating with older C hristians. Through study, observation, and experience, faithful older worshipper s of Jehovah have accumulated priceless knowledge. They have learned to exercise patience and show empathy, and passing on what they have learned to the next ge neration brings them great joy and satisfaction. (Ps. 71:18) Younger ones, be wi se and draw on this source of knowledge as you would draw up water from a deep w ell.Prov. 20:5. 6 Do you let older ones know that you cherish them as Jehovah cherishes them? On e way you can do so is by telling them how much you love them for their faithful ness and how you value their opinions. Moreover, by acting on what you learn fro m them, you demonstrate that your respect for them is sincere. Many elderly Chri stians can recall the wise advice they received from faithful older ones and how acting on it has benefited them throughout their lives. Show Tender Regard in Practical Ways 7 God gives the families of older ones the primary responsibility to provide for them. (Read 1 Timothy 5:4, 8.) Jehovah is pleased when families fulfill their o bligation toward elderly relatives and thus show that they care about older ones as he himself does. God supports these families and blesses them for their effo rts and for all their sacrifices. 8 Similarly, Jehovah is pleased when local congregations assist faithful older o nes who are in need but have no believing or willing family members to care for

them. (1 Tim. 5:3, 5, 9, 10) Congregations thereby show that they have fellow fee ling, brotherly affection, and tender compassion for the elderly. (1 Pet. 3:8) Th eir concern for older congregation members is well-illustrated by Paul when he p oints out that if one member of the human body suffers, all the other members suf fer with it. (1 Cor. 12:26) Taking practical, compassionate action in behalf of o lder ones demonstrates the principle behind Pauls counsel: Go on carrying the burd ens of one another, and thus fulfill the law of the Christ.Gal. 6:2. 9 What burdens do older ones bear? Many tire easily. They may feel that doing ev en basic thingsgoing to the doctor, doing paperwork, cleaning the house, preparin g foodis beyond their capacity. Since appetite and thirst often diminish with age , they may think that they do not need to eat or drink as much as they really sh ould. It can be similar with spiritual nourishment. Aging eyes and ears may make reading and listening to spiritual programs difficult, and just getting ready t o go to Christian meetings may be exhausting. What, then, can others do for such older ones? How You Can Help 10 In many congregations, the elderly are being cared for in an exemplary manner . Loving brothers and sisters help them with shopping, cooking, and cleaning. Th ey help the elderly to study, to get ready for meetings, and to remain regular i n the ministry. Younger Witnesses accompany them and provide transportation. If older ones are unable to leave home, they are tied in to meetings by telephone o r recordings are made for them. Whenever possible, elders make sure that practic al arrangements are implemented in order to meet the needs of older ones in the congregation. 11 Individual Christians too can extend hospitality and display generosity. Afte r the wife of one older brother died, he could no longer afford to pay the rent without her pension. He and his wife had studied the Bible with a familyfather, m other, and two teenage daughterswho had a large house. They gave him two rooms to live in. For 15 years, they shared meals, laughter, and brotherly affection. Th e younger ones gained much from his faith and wealth of experience, and he benef ited from joyful association. This elderly brother lived with them until he died at age 89. The family still thank God for the many blessings they received thro ugh their association with him. They have not lost their reward for having helped a fellow disciple of Jesus Christ.Matt. 10:42. 12 You may not be in a position to assist an elderly brother or sister in the wa y this family did, but you may be able to help older ones to get to meetings and out in the field ministry. You can also invite them to your home and include th em when you go on outings. You can visit them, especially when they are sick or confined. Moreover, you can and should always treat them as mature adults. As lo ng as they are mentally able, older Christians should be included in all decisio n-making that affects them. Even those who have lost much of their mental abilit y can sense whether their dignity is being respected. Jehovah Will Not Forget Your Work 13 Showing consideration for the feelings of older ones is essential. It is not unusual for the elderly to be deeply grieved by their inability to accomplish al l that they were able to when they were younger and healthier. For instance, a s ister who served Jehovah actively for some 50 years and who had been a regular p ioneer developed a debilitating illness and could attend meetings only with grea t difficulty. When she compared her former ministry with her present limitations , she began to cry. Lowering her head, she said through her tears, Im not doing an ything anymore. 14 If you are an older person, have you had such painful feelings? Or are there times when you feel that Jehovah may have abandoned you? The psalmist may have h ad similar feelings in his later years, for he petitioned Jehovah: Do not throw m e away in the time of old age; just when my power is failing, do not leave me. . . . Even until old age and gray-headedness, O God, do not leave me. (Ps. 71:9, 1 8) Of course, Jehovah was not about to abandon the composer of that psalm, and H e will not abandon you. In another psalm, David expressed his confidence in Gods support. (Read Psalm 68:19.) Rest assured that if you are a faithful elderly Chr istian, Jehovah is with you and will continue to sustain you day by day.

15 All that you aging Witnesses of Jehovah have done and are now doing for Gods g lory is never far from his mind. God is not unrighteous so as to forget your work and the love you showed for his name, says the Bible. (Heb. 6:10) Therefore, res ist adopting a negative viewpoint, wrongly thinking that because of advanced age , you are no longer useful to Jehovah. Endeavor to replace depressing, pessimist ic thoughts with positive ones. Rejoice over your blessings and your hope for th e future! We have a future and a hopethe best possibleand these are guaranteed by ou r Creator. (Jer. 29:11, 12; Acts 17:31; 1 Tim. 6:19) Reflect on your hope, work to stay young in heart and mind, and never underestimate the value of your prese nce in the congregation! 16 Consider Johan, who at 80 years of age cares full-time for his faithful, now invalid, wife, Sannie. Sisters take turns staying with Sannie so that Johan can go to meetings and in the ministry. Recently, however, Johan felt that he was ne ar the breaking point emotionally and began thinking that he should no longer se rve as a congregation elder. Whats the point of my being an elder? he asked as tear s welled up in his eyes. I no longer perform any useful function in the congregat ion. His fellow elders assured him that his experience and judgment were invaluab le. They urged him to continue serving as an elder, even if his participation wa s limited. Greatly encouraged, Johan continues to serve as an elder, to the bles sing of the congregation. Jehovah Really Cares 17 The Scriptures make it clear that older ones can continue to prosper spiritua lly despite the problems accompanying old age. The psalmist declared: Those who a re planted in the house of Jehovah . . . will still keep on thriving during gray -headedness, fat and fresh they will continue to be. (Ps. 92:13, 14) The apostle Paul, who may have been dealing with a physical affliction, did not give up, even if the man he was on the outside was wasting away.Read 2 Corinthians 4:16-18. 18 Many modern-day examples prove that older ones can keep on thriving. But the ch allenges of illness and old age can be daunting, even for those who have caring and committed family members to help them. Caregivers too may become worn-out. T he congregation has the privilege and responsibility to put their love into acti on in behalf of older ones and those who care for them. (Gal. 6:10) Such help sh ows that we are not, in effect, telling such ones to go and keep warm and well fe d without assisting them in practical ways.Jas. 2:15-17. 19 Advancing age may change a Christians activities somewhat, but time does not d iminish Jehovahs love for his loyal older servants. On the contrary, all of these faithful Christians are precious in his eyes, and he will never leave them. (Ps . 37:28; Isa. 46:4) Jehovah will sustain and guide them throughout old age.Ps. 48 :14.