Jackie's Journey: Invisible...Who?

“Is not wisdom found among the aged? Does not long life bring understanding?” Job 12: 12

“Is not wisdom found among the aged?

Does not long life bring understanding?”

Job 12: 12

The “Mom Song” is the voice of the ever diligent, often-unheard invisible Mother.

However, there is another category of individuals that are even more imperceptible…grandmothers and great-grandmothers!

Regardless of our involvement in the lives of our children and grandchildren, they reach an age of development (if we have done our job) where their need for us lessens.  They now have their own friends and activities that occupy the time that was once ours!  Life is a whirlwind of academics, team sports, community outreach, horses, theater and musical practices and performances, tennis coaches and tournaments, swim practices and meets, church youth group activities, bible studies, revivals, camps, etc.…! 

Finally, one day… they get driver’s licenses!

Keeping pace with all of this is a tremendous challenge…for all of us!  I am a grandmother of seven; my mother is a great-grandmother of 25 great-grandchildren! She lives on her own, caring for herself, alert with a memory that would put an elephant to shame!  She gives new meaning to the verse in Job 12.  There are very few topics that have applicability to our everyday life, that if asked, she cannot wisely put in perspective, yet she speaks of her need to keep relevant.

I have thought about the statement made by Mom and Job’s proclamation and wondered why in our 21st century culture the advanced in age feel they are being set to one side, listened to less and invisible in a large group of the younger generation.  

These vital soldiers have earned their place among those who should be the most honored, respected and valued in our culture. Titus 2: 3-5 admonishes “the older” women to be reverent in the way they live and to train the younger.”  There is so much to be gleaned from these seasoned veterans that have gone before us, paving the way.  We will quickly step into the print they have left behind!

Our local churches defer to the younger generation. They fill the jobs in women’s ministry and teach the even younger.  The young no longer turn to the older generation.  They have been replaced with quick and empty answers found in the latest technology, social media and their peers.

BUT…“Is not wisdom found among THE AGED”?

While in Panama, our good friends, the Jenkins, a couple with perfect pitch and harmony put this definition below to music.  I have been humming it for years and sing it out loud when my natural inclination to think “I’m all that!” overrides what Scripture says should be the godly point of view!

“Reverence is acknowledging that God is using in my life, people and events to produce the character of Christ in me”.  It is wisely looking at life’s situations (all of them!) from God’s point of view, not my own,  

THEN… the warning:

So be wise my son (daughter), heed my instruction (instantly placing myself in harmony with Him and His will and directives), leave that road that leads to destruction, hallow my name (don’t walk in shame…Proverbs 23: 17,18)

The Word is rich with wise instruction concerning our attitude toward the “old”.  

Psalm 92: 14 gives us A PROMISE when speaking of the advanced in age that bear the fruit of the righteous:

“They will STILL bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming the Lord upright; he is my Rock and there is no wickedness in him”!
  • Deut. 28:50 mentions “a fierce-looking nation without RESPECT for the old”…(Respect should be expected…this nation was noted for its disrespect!)
  • The Third Commandment is devoted to the HONOR our parents are to receive from us!  (There is no designated age termination for this command!)  
  • Joseph brought his father and his entire family to live with him in Egypt during the famine. (We are to be concerned for them and look for opportunities to meet their need)
  • The Old Testament saints carried the dead bones (!) of their ancestors with them when God moved them to another country! (Talk about reverence!)
  • Somehow the patriarchs of old wisely led nations for generations before dying a “good old age”.  “1 Chronicles 29:28”

Age does not define our relevance, but it often reveals our place of usefulness in our present culture.  All of us have the need to be connected.  You may be saying, “Well my mother, grandmother, great-grandmother (etc.) is not deserving of my honor and respect”.  We do not choose our place of birth but we do choose how we allow God to use our circumstances to produce His life in us! 

Psalm 39: 5 tells us what God thinks about age, spoken by David:

“You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is nothing before you. Each man’s life is but a breath”!

I have been told that it is not how old you are, but how you are old.  I agree with Bernard Baruch who said, “To me – old age is fifteen years older than I am!”  My Dad used to say “Growing old isn’t so bad when you consider the alternative”.

Life is inordinately SHORT!  There is always enough time “to heed His instruction”.  There are no exception clauses to obedience…just the command!

So be wise, my daughter, heed His instruction, leave that road that leads to destruction…hallow His Name, don’t walk in shame…”

How do you wisely show honor for those who have gone before you?

Do your little princesses and princes see and hear your reverence for “the aged”?

Will you commit yourself and “heed His instruction” to acknowledge, honor

 and encourage your mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers this week? 

Don’t hinder God’s work!

These “invisible” personalities are God-given with the divine purpose

of producing the character of Christ in us!