2019-01-10 / Opinions

Good old days involved cheap housing, tiny TVs; but the desires of our hearts are irreplaceable


An old man took inventory of his life with his wife of 50 years.

“When we were first married,” he recalled, “we had a cheap house, a rattletrap of a car, slept on the floor, and watched a 10-inch black and white TV, but it was worth it because I was able to hang out with a beautiful 23-year-old.”

“After 50 years of marriage,” he said, “we have a $1 million home, a $50,000 car, a king-size bed, and a 60-inch TV, but I’m sharing company with a 73-year-old woman.”

A bit perturbed, the old gal told her husband he could always go out and find himself a 23-year-old. “But, if you do,” she told him, “I’ll see to it that you’ll be living in a cheap house, driving a rattletrap of a car, sleeping on the floor, and watching a 10-inch black and white TV.”

I received that old story from my friends Don and Betty Bishop, an Owenton, Kentucky, couple who has been married for 62 years. I couldn’t help but laugh at their joke, mainly because I could easily envision the two of them good-naturedly ribbing each other in such a feisty exchange.

The Lord has blessed Don and Bet y over the years. It seems to me that they serve as a testament to the scripture that says: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).

Don and Betty have a comfy home and furnishings. They have nice cars. They even have a great TV. But they wouldn’t categorize those kinds of things as the desires of their hearts. No, the desires of their hearts are the irreplaceable things, a church family who loves them dearly, a Heavenly Father who has promised never to leave them nor forsake them, a Savior who has given them the assurance of eternal life, a son and daughter-in-law who take great care of them as the aches and pains of old age begin to set in, and, of course, they have each other.

I watched as Don and Betty took inventory of their lives in a worship service at South Fork Baptist Church here a while back. Happy tears pooled in their eyes as they recounted how the Lord had indeed given them the desires of their hearts.

With the arrival of the new year, perhaps this would be a good time for all of us to take such an inventory of our own lives. I expect we’d likely find that the Lord has given us the desires of our hearts as well.

Like the old fellow in Don and Betty’s joke, we may just realize life doesn’t get any better than having a 73-year-old wife with a big-screen TV.

(Roger Alford offers words of encouragement to residents of America’s heartland. Reach him at rogeralford1@gmail.com.)

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