Amy Hanson on “Baby Boomers and Beyond”

Amy Hanson

Amy Hanson, nationally-known speaker and author of the book Baby Boomers and Beyond: Tapping the Ministry Talents and Passions of Adults over 50. will join us August 11 as a keynote speaker. Our half-day forum – “Purposeful Retirement: Discovering God’s Calling for the Third Chapter of Life” – will explore the role older adults play in God’s mission. In this excerpt from her book, Hanson explains the potential impact Baby Boomers could have in their later years.

For nearly a century, there has been an upward trend in people living longer and the older population growing. In 1900, four percent of the population was over age 65; in 2001, the figure was 12 percent; and the projection for 2030 is that the proportion of people over 65 will rise to 20 percent.1

Take a look at some other statistics. You may have seen these before or heard them discussed on a news program, but try to look with fresh eyes at these astronomical numbers and really let them soak in.

Americans 65 and older are the fastest-growing segment of the population.
In the past century, the number of Americans over age 65 has increased twelvefold (from 3.1 million to 37.9 million2).
By the year 2030, there will be 72.1 million people in America over the age of 653.
An American turns 60 every seven seconds.

It is no accident that God has allowed such a large number of older people to be alive in this moment in time. In his great sovereignty and wisdom, he chose this time to raise up an army of older adults for his purposes. We must tap into God’s plan for the members of this generation, to see them come to Christ, grow in Him, and be engaged in meaningful service.

There are hundreds of thousands of older adults in their late sixties, seventies, and even eighties who are looking at aging in a new way. They are seeking meaning and purpose and have discretionary time, wisdom, and experience that are too valuable to ignore.

Redefining Retirement 

Not long ago, I met a retired man who was a living example of the vision we hope all adults will embrace… He was serving in various ministries in his local church and had a passion for life that was contagious. When I asked him why he served in such a significant way during his retirement years, he told me a story.

When my granddaughter was a little girl, I used to sing a song to her that went like this:

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,
All good girls go to heaven.
When they get there, they will say,
“We love Jesus every day.”

One day, I overheard her singing the song in another room. She sang: 

One, two, three, four, five, six, seven,
All good grandpas go to heaven.
When they get there, they will say,
“GOLF, GOLF, GOLF, GOLF, every day!”

At this point, I [Amy] cracked up laughing, but he looked me straight in the eyes with a serious look on his face and said, “Amy, in that moment, I saw myself through the eyes of my granddaughter. She saw what my passion was, and this was not the legacy I wanted to leave.”

He proceeded to tell me about the changes he made in his life after this realization. His story typifies the dream I have for every single person over the age of 50. It is a dream where older people are motivated to give their lives away to people needing God’s grace. A dream where aging is not feared but rather welcomed as a God-ordained season of life. It is a dream where older adults are fully using all of their talents, gifts, and abilities to make a major Kingdom impact.

An Invitation from DIFW

Popular culture hypes retirement as a season of leisure and liberation — a well-deserved rest after a lifetime of work. Yet the Bible never even mentions retirement! Join us at “Purposeful Retirement: Discovering God’s Call for the Third Chapter of Life” to explore God’s greater purpose for your retirement. This half-day event will bring together retirees, and those anticipating retirement to learn from engaging speakers (like Amy) and each other.


U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Aging, “A Profile of Older Americans, 2008.”




Amy Hanson

Amy Hanson, Ph.D. is a speaker, writer, and consultant with a passion to help older adults discover a life of Christ-centered meaning and purpose. At the age of 23, Amy became the full-time active adult minister at Central Christian Church in Las Vegas, Nevada, where for five years she led a ministry of over three hundred adults fifty and older. Her ministry experience led her to write Baby Boomers and Beyond: Tapping the Ministry Talents and Passions of Adults Over 50.