I have found age to be a two-edged sword. I believe I know more of what matters now than I did a quarter century ago. The “long view” adds a perspective that cannot be rushed. There is a certain wisdom that can come with age. Some of the wisdom comes from maturity. Some comes from the school of hard knocks (also known as the “stupid-things-I-have-done-and-was-lucky-enough-to-survive-and-learn-from.”)
The other edge of the sword comes from people being less inclined to listen to you because you are old and “out of touch.” While many cultures revere their elderly, we basically tolerate them. The exception may be the aged in our own family. We worship youth. Our advertisements and consumption point to that reality.
While scripture encourages us to respect those of age, what it really values is wisdom. We can get old and never become any wiser. Just like old grapes can become either vinegar or a fine wine.
Where is wisdom’s place in your life? Where do you seek wisdom? Do you ask yourself, “Is this the wise thing to do (despite what is expedient and feels good?)”
A life richly lived with God yields the luscious fruit of wisdom. Age is automatic, wisdom must be sought. And, in wisdom, there is life. I pray wisdom for you today.
Is not wisdom found among the aged? Does not long life bring understanding? Job 12:12 (NIV)
Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you. Exodus 20:12 (NIV)
Stand up in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the Lord. Leviticus 19:32 (NIV)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. Proverbs 1:7 (NIV)
Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. Proverbs 13:10 (NIV)
Those who trust in themselves are fools, but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe. Proverbs 28:26 (NIV)
Those who trust in themselves are fools, but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe. Ecclesiastes 7:12 (NIV)