Our culture prefers youth and beauty to age and wisdom. If you don’t believe me, just look! Watch how the news stations predictably replace trusted anchors with the newer, shinier models every few years. Jack Weinberg coined the phrase, “Don’t trust anyone over 30.” Seeing as Jack is now 80, and his phrase is now more than 50 years old, I wonder if we can trust it? Or is it disposable now, too?
Job 12:12 says that “Wisdom is with the aged, and understanding in length of days.” Proverbs 23:22 says “Listen to your father who gave you life, and do not despise your mother when she is old.” And the law of Moses even commanded, “You shall stand up before the gray head and honor the face of an old man, and you shall fear your God” (Leviticus 19:32)
Older people are a treasure trove of wisdom. They have graduated from the school of hard knocks with advanced degrees. Their experience can be a great teacher—if we’re willing to listen.
It sobers me to think how much history is being lost every day. Fewer than 2% of the 16 million American soldiers who fought in World War II are still with us. Each day, these veterans pass away, and their stories with them. We are losing something that cannot be regained.
Take some time this week to listen to an older person in your circle. Hear their stories. Save their history. You will be a blessing and blessed.