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The Elder

By Roger E. Bruner


Elderly Paul “Barney” Eisner lives to help others.
When he’s forced into retirement at the age of eighty, he loses his sense of worth. Having an accident immediately after seeking a volunteer position at church and being stuck at home with a broken leg that refuses to heal discourages him even more.
When his wife, Anna, brings his old guitar down from the attic, he starts honing his long-unused playing skills. He composes two songs and records them at home. The first is too personal to share with anyone else, but he believes the second one will bless others and give him a new sense of worth.
Anna anonymously sends the recording to local Christian radio station WJCR, protecting Barney’s identity by referring to him as THE ELDER. She hopes someone there will be willing to listen to it and encourage him.
The station personnel do more than that. They want to play his song on the air. Within days ‘The BE Song’ airs on a number of sister stations and becomes a nationwide Christian hit. Aware that it is blessing numerous thousands of listeners who have no idea that Barney is THE ELDER, he revels in his renewed sense of worth.
God doesn’t inspire Barney to write any more songs, however, and Anna deflates his dream of becoming a performer by pointing out that he is an old man who doesn’t have the necessary stamina—either as Barney Eisner or THE ELDER.
How can he regain his worth once ‘The BE Song’ starts losing its initial popularity? Is Anna correct that God may have given Barney great success once to prepare him to be helpful in smaller ways? Can ‘The BE Song’ itself possibly provide the answer?

Book Takeaway:

God's idea of how to use us may be quite different from the how we think He should use us. We need to be open and faithful to obey.

Why the author wrote this book:

As a seventy-seven-year-old man, I want to see more Christian novels about the elderly, ones that have appeal for other adult readers as well. As a guitar player and song writer I felt led to fictionalize some of my own story without coming anywhere close to writing a truthful autobiography.


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