2 Samuel 21:15
Moreover the Philistines had yet war again with Israel; and David went down, and his servants with him, and fought against the Philistines: and David waxed faint.
David had become an old man and was like many older men who think they can do what they have always done, but he found out that he didn't have the strength he once used to have. Instead, when David went up against Goliath’s son, he waxed faint, but Abishai succoured him and smote the Philistine for David.
There is a great truth in this story that every church needs to learn so they can extend their pastor’s ministry. David had carried the weight of Israel on his shoulders for years and led in all the battles; however, there came a time for the younger generation to step up and help their leader so their nation could go forward. Imagine if Abishai had watched his leader fight instead of getting involved to help him, David would have died an early death and Israel would have lost the sweet psalmist of Israel.
Years ago, a preacher taught me a valuable truth about the treatment of older men of God. He said to me, “Find an older preacher and make him great.” That statement has rung through my mind for years, and one thing I have always tried to do is to treat older men as great men. I understand that they cannot do what they once used to do, but someone needs to make them great. I refuse to let the only time we honor older men of God is when they are in the casket; they should be honored when they are alive. Too many men of God have gone to the grave never hearing about how they influenced lives, and the only time they hear it is when they are in the casket. My friend, that is too late!
My father-in-law, Dr. Steve Heidenreich, is a member of my church. He is an aged man who thinks he is still young, but his body tells him differently. I am amazed how he tries in his seasoned years to do what he did when he was younger, but he can't because he has waxed faint. I have watched this great man of God beat himself up because he wants to be a greater help to his pastor, but his body won’t let him. I often tell him that what I need from him more than anything else is his mind. He has been where I am going, and if I can glean from his mind, I am gleaning great wisdom that will help me to pastor my people better and grow God’s church.
It is time that the younger generation steps up and helps the older men who have waxed faint because of age. While the older generation is around, the younger generation ought to aid in the building of the church and glean from the wisdom of the older generation. There will come a day when the older generation is in Heaven, and you will rue the day that you wasted while they were alive to glean their wisdom that could help you build people and the church.
Moreover, one day you will wax faint because of age, and you can teach the generation below you how to treat the aged saints by stepping up and helping them to build people and a great work for God. Stop leaving the work to the older generation to do, and be a part of the solution to be a great force to helping them build a great work. If you aid the older generation when you are younger, you will find that when you get older and wax faint because of age that a younger generation will come to help you because you showed them how to do this when you were their age.