Reflections On Faith And Life For The Years Of Winter…
Memory experts say that old age produces a condition that is like chronic divided attention. I can certainly attest to that.
That’s one of the reasons we have short-term memory problems. Our focus can shift so quickly. “Now that I’m old, I spend a lot of time wondering about the hereafter. I walk into a room and wonder, What am I here after?”
One of our friends recently proudly posted a notice that he had actually walked into a room and remembered why he had gone there in the first place. “It was the bathroom, but…”
The problem with old-age brains, that give us that chronic divided attention, is not just physical. It’s also spiritual. The very first commandment, not just because God wants a lot of attention, but because God knows we don’t focus very well, is: You shall have no other gods ahead of me!
Of course, that really means you have no other gods at all, because God is the ground of being, the end all of end all. There is no need for other gods.
We keep creating lesser gods and accepting them and worshipping them, anyway. Old age is a gift of focus, precisely because we know our brains can so easily go out of focus, be divided. Every time we wonder “What am I here after?” we are reminded of why we are here, in any moment: “To love thee more dearly, to see thee more clearly, to follow thee more nearly, day by day.” 
1] A song by Stephen Schwartz and John-Michael Tebelak in the musical, Godspell, 1971, from a prayer of 13th century English bishop Sir Richard of Chichester.