Focus: Being submissive to one another
1 Peter 5:5 (NKJV) Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”
Unless you’re the oldest person on the planet—you have elders. Everyone should honor their elders, but ‘old school’ ways get a bad rap these days, and wisdom from yesteryears is not often appreciated or respected. With all of the intelligence it takes to operate all of the latest technology and gadgets, no wonder ‘those who get it’ think they can’t learn much from ‘those who don’t.’
It’s unusual to find young people who take a true interest in their elders, and yet, it isn’t just the kids. We all tend to be somewhat selective in who we spend time with or listen to. It’s natural for any age group to feel most comfortable with others who may be within a decade or so of their birth year.
Life is complex. We could all learn a lot from each other, but few people are willing to take advice—whether it be from someone older or younger. I will say that the older I get, the more likely I am to at least listen to what other people have to say, but not many of us go around and take a poll before we decide to try doing something that sounds good to us.
Some people are natural born leaders and others just want to follow, but typically, you don’t see a lot of people looking for an older person to mentor them. Let’s just say it—it’s the age of arrogance, and it’s not just the teenagers and young adults—every age group seems to have an attitude about those who are older and younger than they are.
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Those of us who are older could probably learn a thing or two from younger people. They have knowledge that would be helpful to us, but sometimes it’s humiliating to have to ask for help. It’s hard admitting that you need someone younger to help you with the things they consider so elementary.
It’s not that we’re incapable of learning as we get older—it’s just that many of us are just way too proud to put ourselves in the position of having to ask for help.
The last summer before our youngest daughter left for college, she recognized that she needed to ‘break me’ of the habit I had developed of frequently—okay, constantly asking her things like: how to spell a word I didn’t use much any more, or if she could get me the street address of a place I needed to find, or whether she knew the answer to countless other bits of trivia and vital statistics.
When she was a little younger, all I had to do was ask a question and her fingers quickly flew over the keys of her laptop and in no time, she had produced the right answer. It gave her a sense of achievement whenever I’d say, “GREAT!” Or, “You’re so good at that!” Or, “Miranda to the rescue!” She really was a super-hero to me…but then came that last summer when she knew she was moving across the state to start her life as a young adult…and leaving me behind. That summer, every time I asked her a question, she’d say, “Mom, google it.” I didn’t want to take the time to go to my computer—she was already on hers, so what was the big deal about her giving me the answer? I had never ‘googled.’
I didn’t even realize what she was up to at first, bless her heart. She knew she had to teach her ‘old mom’ to do her own research—and you know what? By the end of the summer, I got pretty good at it.
Sometimes we get stuck in a rut. We don’t know stuff, and we don’t think we can learn—but we can. Making an effort to get with the program has helped me more than I can say. I try to go to mentoring groups as often as possible now, so I can learn new things from others. In turn, I love sharing what I’ve learned with people who want to know more. We all have a lot to learn.
Declaration: I will find new strength by being humble enough to make an effort to learn new things. Putting myself in a position of learning and growing will help me begin to see progress and have hope for the future.
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