Age and Wisdom

One of my favourite Mark Twain quotes is:

When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.

For me this process of learning hasn’t finished even though now I am probably older than Mark’s father was. I am continually amazed how much wisdom older people have. The tragedy is, that unlike mark Twain, we as a society have been failing to listen to the our seniors for many years.

Readers of my blog know that I am a passionate advocate for young people but I am also an advocate for those who have experienced much and have wisdom to offer. Yes I have come across a few old fools who make sure that everybody knows their opinion – ad nauseum. But there are many more older people who have a quiet and experience wrought wisdom which has been nurtured through faith. All we need to do is ask. We have to ask because too often they have been told their opinion is not worth anything.

Job 12:12 asks

Is not wisdom found among the aged?
Does not long life bring understanding?

Think of the questions we need to ask our elders:

How did you keep your marriage working?
What obstacles to faith do we need to keep alert to?
What did you do that was particularly effective in raising your family?
What mistakes did you make?
What boundaries did you set on your children?
How did you cope in the traumas of life?

And there are many, many more questions. If we don’t ask, we won’t find out. If we don’t find out, we will be the poorer.

Categories: christian, Christianity, Devotional, Faith, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “Age and Wisdom

  1. I spent weeks visiting my grandmother in the hospital before she died asking her everything I ever wanted to know. That time was the most valuable of my life, and I reflect on her answers often. The elderly came from a generation that valued privacy and dignity, so we must remember to ask.

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