I guess most of us have heard that Tom Brady retired after 23 record setting years in the National Football League(NFL)….winning 6 Super Bowls and holding numerous records. In the NFL, he is generally considered the GOAT (GOAT= Greatest of All Time). Tom is 45 years old and it seems that he will never do anything that can be measured against this high level of achievement… what can he do with rest of his life….. be an Astronaut and fly to Mars, climb Mt. Everest in swimming trunks? Being the GOAT in the NFL is a big act to follow.
Yet Tom didn’t die. He’s 45 years old. He could live to 90. What does God think about this situation. Does he think “Gee Tom your life is over …… congratulations on a good career, but let’s be real… after all, you’re the GOAT… in the eyes of the world, it’s all downhill from here.” I don’t think so.
When I was getting ready to retire at 70, some asked me , “Dave, what are you going to do when you retire; how will you spend your time ….. take a cruise, clean out the garage, take up a hobby…..?” To be honest I didn’t have grand plans; I was looking forward to relaxing a bit, not having to follow a strict schedule, maybe sleeping in if I felt like it, perhaps catching up on those old John Wayne Westerns. Yet it was clear to me that there is no retirement in the service of the Lord. Things would be different, but Jesus would remain number one; he would still be first in my life, remaining my Lord, my “benevolent boss”, my friend.
So while my goal of serving the Lord in retirement was the same, I knew the way it was going to happen would be different. The past 7 years have been a transition as I’ve been figuring it out. Jesus has been drawing me closer to him. I’ve been able to pray more since I have more time. I’ve been able to serve in many but different ways. I’ve tried some things and put some things aside. I’ve experienced conviction and healing and deliverance. God has revealed a number of areas where my ego was on the throne of my life, not the Lord…. where it was about “ME” and my ways and desires. Pride is a subtle snare that’s not easy to recognize. In all those convictions, I’ve experienced piece and the kind and gentle hand of the “divine physician”. He is so merciful. I’ve become less afraid and guarded of being convicted of my sin and sinful tendencies, because I know the Lord loves me and only wants my best. I don’t have to be afraid.
I could go on and on about my 7 years of retirement but the main point in that these “retirement” years can be great years…different, less newsworthy, but great. We can grow in holiness and we can be a help to our loved ones and others as they “fight the good fight of faith”. The Lord has more for me to do and I want to be faithful in doing them. I don’t want anything left in my “IN BASKET” when the time of my passing arrives; I want to do all the good Lord has put on my plate.
So I hope that Tom Brady’s next years are far better than his first 45… maybe not as newsworthy in the secular press, but front page in the Heavenly Times. And that would be very good news.
3 thoughts on ““How Do You Top This””
Retirement is definitely a new season and really needs a new name, “preparation” as our goal is more clearly in sight 🙌🏻 May we finish strong🙏 And so blessed to do travel together🥰
Dad, you’ve done a great job transitioning the past 7 years. I’m very proud of your flexibility & desire to learn new things. Thanks for all you’ve done to serve us!! Easier said than done – and I hope you have slept in!
So much for those grand plans of sleeping in…ahem, my birdie
Catherine Pagano (Touhill) email@example.com