New statistics from the US Census Bureau reveals an aging population. Since the 2000 Census, Ohio’s 18-64 year old population grew 3 percent from 6.97 million to 7.18 million. The number of 65 and over group increased by 4 percent from 1.51 million to 1.57 million.
The inverse is true of Ohio’s children. The number of children under 18 declined 5 percent. Children 5 years of age and under saw the least decline, only 1 percent (753,669 to 743,750). Ohio’s teen population also declined by nearly 1 percent (655,411 to 646,135). The largest decline was seen among Ohio’s 5-13 year old group, which was 9 percent. The number children ages 5-13 declined from 1,476,529 to 1,340,492.
The question is whether Ohio politicians and business leaders will find creative solutions for this group of future workers and taxpayers to both funding the elderly retirement and health needs, or will they simply greater debt burden that will rob them of a decent lifestyle. If so, the increasing debt burden will likely produce a citizenry oppositional to those aged leaders and their irresponsible generation.
Today is a day of vision. Children came to Hospitality East seeing chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies, tasty jellybeans, and other fantasies children envision during the Easter season. Unfortunately, dark clouds above and raindrops below spoiled the screaming excitement of the annual hunt for the most colorful eggs. Those are the kind bunnies don’t lay.
Hospitality East is where my young 93 years of age father resides. Don’t tell him he is not young; it’ll spoil all of the fun….
Residents like my Dad saw many little festive faces pass by their wheelchair seeking chocolate filled eggs. The joy of seeing those smiling little eyes and hearing thank you was simply delightful. The opportunity to give the sought for candy brought back memories of even more joyful Easters when their own children where on the quest for the delicious treasurers. For many, it was like an NFL instant replay.
But what of tomorrow? What will Easter mean to the aged and young tomorrow? For Easter is not really about bunnies and their tasty eggs. Easter is about new life. When America was a more agrarian society, new life was represented by budding of trees, of flowers, and the beginning of a new harvest season. Few children living in our man-made desert of mostly wood, steel, concrete and asphalt have much appreciation for nature’s natural resurrection. The drab barrenness of grass, trees, and sky reflects the prospects of the aged. Sun may shine and the grass reborn but only on their wilting aged frames.
The ray of hope that Easter brings is a new morning of life without pain, illness, poverty, loneliness, or alienation. Easter sunrise beams the warmth of God’s love manifest in the death and the resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus offers a tomorrow of life after death. Jesus gives an eternal tomorrow without the pain of death, whether that death came by the consequences of wrongdoing, or by divorce, or by illness, or by some other circumstance. Jesus became poor so that we may have an abundant life. While Jesus’ death satisfies God’s justice for every moral crime, his resurrection is assurance that he who has suffered as we often do will guide us to life restored to God.
Tomorrow–Easter Sunday–is a day to remember that new life is possible through Jesus. Those who accept Jesus as their covenant with God have seen the vision of tomorrow; and they still see that today’s troubles are temporary in light of the reward of eternal life with Jesus in God’s kingdom.
The aroma of grass reborn and plant life budding anew is another reminder of God’s promise of a glorious tomorrow born of Jesus’ victory over alienation, pain, shame, and death. That promise is one confirmed throughout the life of experienced faith today.
by Daniel Downs
Posted in Easter, events, news
Tagged death, easter egg hunt, elderly, eternity, hope, Hospitality East, Jesus, pain, resurrection