Today, I helped to preach the funeral for Mrs. Blanche Lea who went to be with her Lord this past week at the age of 96. Mrs. Blanche was a wonderful lady who loved God and lived a life of impact for Christ. She amazed me with her vitality and mental wit. She was still cooking and planting flowers at 95. Her mind was razor sharp until just a few months ago. At the funeral, I saw a friend of mine, Mrs. Helen Fairchild, who is 98. We had a delightful few minutes to visit. There was a lady with her who assured me that Mrs. Helen was still very sharp mentally at 98.
I want to be like that. It'd be great to live into your 90's (am I guilty of wanting to delay heaven?) and have excellent mental prowess. So, I know that one way of increasing my chances of doing this is to exercise my brain. They say if I do things like crosswords puzzles and sudoku that I am more likely to maintain mental agility well into my later years.
I was on the road a good bit today (5+ hours) and remembered that I'd heard somewhere that memorizing the alphabet backwards was good for the noggin. I have never recited the alphabet backwards before. So that was my first for today. With 5-6 hours of car time, I went after it. I found out after a few minutes that a tune would be really helpful. I tried to sing the ABC tune to the backwards version and that just confused me even more. This backward thing took a few minutes.
Well, I worked at it a while and finally got it. This is where I tried to insert the video I did of myself reciting the ABC's backwards. But, alas, I was unable to figure out how to get the video on this page. Feel free to use your imagination. I can get pictures (I'm sure you are well aware of that) but for some reason the video had some errors while trying to download. That's what my computer said and it also said it was sorry. After the work I did on this, time spend trying to get it on this page, and excitement over it being on this page, I think I'm sorrier than the computer is about this particular error.
Here's what I thought about as I practiced saying the ABC's backwards. I know that I should exercise my body, brain and soul daily. Knowing that is not the same as doing that. It's not that difficult to say the ABC's backwards (easier than running a marathon; harder than eating a bowl of ice cream). It just takes repetition and a little time (5 hours should be sufficient). I was reminded that knowing I should do something is not the same as doing it. The book of James in the Bible says that we are to be doers of the Word and not hearers only. It's one thing to hear something at church or read something in the Bible and think it's a good idea. It's something different to hear or read it and then actually go out and obey the Word. Since this is Saturday night for me, it's a good reminder to do the Word.
A second thought I had was how the Bible is backwards (I got this from saying the ABC's backwards) in many ways to contemporary thought. Jesus said the way to live is to die, the way to get is to give, if we are persecuted we should rejoice, and if someone curses us we should bless them. That just sounds backwards. And yet, as we do the Words of Jesus, we experience the truth of them.
I've heard people say that they knew somebody that knew his Bible frontwards and backwards. Well, the key is to do the Bible. I don't know my Bible backwards (I don't even know what that would look like) but I could say my ABC's backwards today. I really could. I did it for my kids and the video is on my computer. I may not be able to say them tomorrow. It was not fun enough to keep practicing.
So, being a little backwards is a good thing sometimes. Now, before I sprain my brain, I think I'll go give it some rest.
Going backwards for the abundant life
3 things I thank God for today
1. Mrs. Blanche Lea
2. Mrs. Helen Fairchild
3. Older people who love and give to younger people