Old and beautiful

by Mickey McLean

Posted on Tuesday, June 16, 2015, at 5:08 pm

When WORLD publishes an obituary of an elderly person, should we accompany it with a recent photo or one of the person when he or she was younger?

Several of our members took us to task when we chose a photo from last year to illustrate Daniel James Devine’s remembrance of Elisabeth Elliot, who died yesterday morning at age 88. They asked us to replace it with one of her when she was “young and beautiful.” Despite being in the throes of dementia, Elliot still displayed in her latter years the joy of living as a child of God. What a smile and twinkling blue eyes she has in this photo. This image shouts: Here is a godly woman, made in the image of God, who lived many fruitful years and ran the race set before her so well.

We all like to remember our younger selves and the youthful versions of the ones we love. But praise God for His promise of new resurrection bodies in heaven that no longer deteriorate as they do here on earth. In the meantime, though, as our aging neighbors and family members face the temptation of assisted suicide and the government seeks to pass laws that devalue the sanctity of life, let’s celebrate those like Elisabeth Elliot who endure until the end. And let’s not be afraid to show them as they are: old and beautiful.

Mickey McLean

Mickey is executive editor of WORLD Digital.

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