American 'Halftimers' Look to Make Lasting Impact

Have you achieved success, only to find that something is missing? Many people who turn 50 find themselves asking this question, a study has indicated.

One group calls this the "halftime phenomenon," a social movement consisting of people aged 50-70 years who feel unfulfilled with their careers and decide they want to make a more lasting impact on the world.

A Harvard/Met Life study found that half of all Americans in that age group are interested in working to help the poor, elderly and others in need, according to Lloyd Reeb, spokesman for the Halftime initiative of the Leadership Network. "They want to transition from lives of success to lives of significance," he said, according to Baptist Press.

Chris Danzi, who earned a vice president position at a bank and a silver BMW, found himself asking, "What next? Am I having a midlife crisis?"

Soon, he found fulfillment in church and launched an effort to impact African villages affected by the AIDS pandemic. "Frankly, I'm blown away that God can use an ordinary banker like me to make this kind of eternal impact in these children's lives," he said.

Recently published Unlimited Partnership: Igniting a Marketplace Leader’s Journey to Significance tell such real life stories on the struggles and successes of "halftimers" and how they can find significance in serving others for Christ.

"A growing number of seasoned business leaders want to use their skills and experience to make a difference for the Lord in their world," said authors Bill Wellons and Reeb. "The obvious place for doing so is through their church. But many feel stuck. They have no idea where to begin or who to talk to."

Over the past decade, the Halftime organization has become a leading authority in the capacity of helping halftimers, who have mainly achieved financial independence in the marketplace, find significance in the second half of their lives through resources and networks.

The recent book releases at a time when church groups are recognizing that the Baby Boomer generation, those who are 50-plus years of age, is one of the largest mission fields yet also one of the most neglected.

The Assemblies of God appointed this year its first ever missionary to the Baby Boomer group, or what the Pentecostal group labeled "mature adults." Its mission focus is to help the older generation of believers create a ministry out of their interests and gifts rather than maintaining them with sing-a-longs or potlucks. As mature adults, they are a group with time, and years of experience, talents, and financial resources to aid ministry and mission efforts, the Rev. John Heide, the appointed Pentecostal missionary, said.

Halftime spokesman Reeb hopes mature adults will realize where their deepest satisfaction comes from.

"We realize that the deepest satisfaction comes not so much from accomplishing big things for God," he said, "but from surrendering our hearts and agenda to God and living each day in community with Him."