I went to a CD release party for my brother-in-law in Chicago this past weekend. The 250-mile-round-trip-in-less-than-24-hours was not my greatest show of support; it was the fact that I stayed up past my bedtime. (Apparently, CDs cannot be released before sunset; it must have something to do with the Jewish calendar.) I had to wait until midnight to hear the first C-chord strummed on his guitar.
Once upon a time the notion of an all-nighter sounded romantic, especially if it included the highway and chocolate donuts. But when you lose three hours of sleep due to distance, one hour due to time zones, and a fourth hour due to a noisy cat who crawls about your chest as soon as you hit your bed, the romance wilts. You're left with red eyes, black rings, and a green stomach.
I feel old when I don't get enough sleep; I feel old when I play sports and ache the following day; I feel old when I run my fingers through my hair and twenty of them dive to the floor.
Feeling old has a remedy, though. Any time it oppresses me, I tell a stranger I'm a pastor. They automatically clarify, asking if I'm a youth pastor. I assure them I am not; I am merely young.
Fortunately, age is not what defines my ministry, it merely seasons it. Rather, my speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity are definitive characteristics (2 Tim. 4:12). Or so I pray.