Are You Looking Forward to Retirement?

(continued from yesterday’s post)

Another concept that ancient Hebrew does not recognize is retirement.  No word exists in Hebrew for retirement, which indicates to devotees of ancient Hebrew that the very concept of retirement is flawed.

Yes, someone can decide to simply stop working, but giving a name to such an irrational action does not confer on it any legitimate reality.  It is almost as ridiculous as deciding to stop breathing or stop eating.  Being alive means that we breathe, eat, and work.  We do more than these basics, of course, but that is where it begins. 

Prior to about the 1950s there was no such thing as retirement as we use the term today.  A 1950 poll showed that most workers aspired to work for as long as possible.  Quitting was for the disabled.  Life did not offer “twilight years,” perhaps two decades of uninterrupted leisure courtesy of the US taxpayer. 

We work, not because we need the results of that work, but because there is intrinsic meaning and value in the work itself. 

                                                    ~Rabbi Daniel Lapin

So what do you think?  IS retirement a valid concept, or simply something created by a society who values leisure much more highly than they should?



About dayuntoday

I'm a wonderer. I spend a lot of time mulling, pondering, and cogitating. This is just a place to park some of those thoughts.
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10 Responses to Are You Looking Forward to Retirement?

  1. bwebbjr says:

    No, I do not see retirement as a valid concept.  Many more mature adults seem to see retirement as a return to the selfishness often witnessed in childhood, tween and teen years tending to see it as me-tirement.  And you know who typically suffers from that?  The children and oftentimes more specifically grand children and great grandchildren.  And then there are those who have lived for nothing but work … and retirement often means death within a very short period of time.  It is a flesh and world based creation trying to mimic the rest that God will one day give his followers.  I’m on the same page as you.  As long as I am able and the Lord is willing, I see work as a part of my life … just perhaps with a bit less stress and intensity.  Good thought provoking and challenging post.  Thanks!Be blessed IN Christ Jesus and His love!Bernie

  2. BarryDadof3 says:

    I had always assumed that I would work until I could not work no more…. by that I mean work until I could not work anywhere no more

  3. Anonymous says:

    I’ll retire when I die.  ‘Course, I’ll really just be moving on to the next job- glorifying God for eternity!  No, I don’t think it’s a valid concept; American culture has become me-centric (that’s why all the ads try to convince us that we deserve the things they’re selling), and the current idea of retirement is consistent with that.  Besides, most of the older people that I know, including my own grandparents, can’t handle ‘retirement’.  It drives them crazy.  So they entered the volunteer force, which is dwindling…they work just as hard now taking care of shut-ins and doing church stuff than they did when they were teaching.  Eh, enough ranting.  Good post.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I cannot wait to “retire” and volunteer overseas with Ralph! Or the Memorial Hospital! So I guess ‘retirement’ is not in my vocabulary!!! The church needs EVERYONE! God has a full time job for every Believer!

  5. fwren says:

    I definitely think it has been created by modern society.  Would you mind if I cut and paste this into an e-mail to some family and friends? ~ it is well worth reading.

  6. homefire says:

    @fwren – fine with me!  Do you think I dare share it with my parents?  @bwebbjr – @BarryDadof3 – @Adrienne_Spenrath – @viewinghuijia – Thanks for your input!  I’m encouraged by all the positive comments.  Seems like most people out there are looking forward to retirement!

  7. BooksForMe says:

    I don’t think retirement is a bad idea, in the sense of older folks whose health may be suffering getting a break from the 40-hour week. However, I don’t like the idea of retirement being the time when people just do what they please, or finally fulfill their dreams.  I hate the notion of waiting until a certain age to volunteer, travel, etc.  I really reject that notion of waiting until retirement to do anything–especially those things for the Kingdom of God.  I really think it encourages workaholics and greed—must stash away as much cash now for “retirement.”  I’m pretty counter-culture, though. LOL

  8. homefire says:

    @BooksForMe – I think the idea is that it’s not right to simply quit working so that you can play–travel the world and play golf every day.  This guy even says that it’s fine to quit or slow down your career, but you need to still be doing meaningful work as long as you are able.  And when I think about the people I know, I am just convinced it’s true.  The ones who sit and do nothing become ill and old–the ones who keep working stay young.  My 102 year-old grandfather is a good example.  He kept climbing ladders and painting as long as he possibly could, and then he spent hours in his woodshop.  Only very recently has he started just sitting a lot, and even now he still lives alone, drives to town, and goes to the nursing home to see the “old” people (who are all younger than he is!)

  9. BooksForMe says:

    @homefire – Are you sure your grandfather isn’t Superman?

  10. homefire says:

    @BooksForMe –   Nope, a very ordinary guy, actually–never makes waves, just lives his life.

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