When someone asks our age, why are we expected to give the exact number of years we’ve lived on this Earth?
This may sound strange, but many ages are currently represented inside this body of mine. The little girl in me loves riding bikes with my daughters, while my old soul sneaks away often and reads a book under the hackberry tree in the backyard. Forty-something, working mom shows up when it is time to pay bills and get the oil changed.
Some days, when the ’80s music is blasting and energy is high, I’m 16 again. On the other hand, after a day of doing yard work, I feel every one of my years — and then some.
Within me dwells youthful spontaneity and mature stability. Honestly, I like both.
If I experience all those different stages of life at any given day here on Earth, why couldn’t they all be represented in my resurrected body in Heaven? Must we really settle on a specific age?
Have We Been Influenced?
If we look to Renaissance art such as Luca Signorelli’s “The Resurrection of the Flesh” to advise us regarding our age in Heaven, we will all live eternally young, rosy-fleshed, muscular and naked.
But that’s totally unbiblical.
If we look to certain Christian scholars, we find different reasons for our eternal youth. St. Augustine taught us believers will be 30 years old in Heaven, the supposed physical peak of the human body. Thomas Aquinas reasoned since most Bible scholars believe Jesus was 33 at the time of His resurrection, we will likewise enter into eternity, frozen at that “perfect age.”
With all due respect to those two widely recognized names of historical Christianity, they were flat out speculating.
When the Scriptures speak of eternity, age isn’t mentioned. Nevertheless, we’ve taken our cues from outside sources and concluded we will be forever young.
Who Wants To See Old Saints?
Honestly, I wouldn’t mind seeing my grandmother in Heaven similar to the way she was when she left this life. Those wrinkles around her eyes testified to the fact that she saw some things. Her words dripped with wisdom from a long life of studying the Word of God and abiding in His presence. Certainly, greeting a 30-year-old version of my grandmother would be a bit foreign. But, no doubt, I’ll take her any age I can have her.
I knew and enjoyed my mother so much more when she was in her 50s than when she was in her 30s because we grew into our relationship. As we aged, we got each other. What I wouldn’t give to see that gorgeous white hair of hers glimmering in the light of eternity.
Some of us who have lived a bit longer, while we admire the glamour of youth, recognize youth does not necessarily equal perfection. To erase the physical signs of our hard-fought maturation might not be a completely welcomed change.
So what age will we be in Heaven? Will we be young or old? Could there be glimpses of both in our resurrection bodies?
No one knows for sure, so we will stick to what we do know: “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is” (1 John 3:2).
As my mother used to say, “Age is a matter of the mind. If you don’t mind, it don’t matter.”
When we enter the Kingdom of Heaven, I can’t imagine age will matter anymore. At that point, our joy will come from finally becoming more like our Jesus than we’ve ever been.
Having to count our years and report an exact number to inquisitive acquaintances will be a thing of the past. And the sweetest part of all is that our best days will forever lie before us.