“Upon my right hand rise the youth; they push away my feet, and they raise up against me the ways of their destruction.”
Job made an interesting statement above when he said, “Upon my right hand rise the youth; they push away my feet…” It is interesting that the very youth he once helped no longer wanted his help; in fact, he said that the youth had pushed him away. In Job’s perception, he felt that it was because he was in a helpless condition that they pushed him away. The Scriptures never make clear if the youth had actually pushed him away, but in his mind he clearly felt that the youth were trying to do away with him.
Job’s perception of the youth is the same perception that many older people have of the youth. The older a person gets, the more that insecurities begin to set in. When you get around the older generation who have fought their wars, lived most of their lives in the ministry, and are now living out the remainder of their lives trying to feel somewhat relevant, you will often find them feeling very insecure and unwanted by the youth. This should never happen! The older generation should be the most wanted generation. The older generation fought wars so that the youth can enjoy a period of peace. The older generation has paved the way for the youth to be able to go on and do greater works. The fact that the older generation feels as if they are being pushed away only reveals that the youth have not done their part in making sure they are still wanted. There are several things the younger generation should do to make the older generation feel needed.
First, honor the works that they have done instead of trying to tear them down. I am certainly not saying that the older generation is perfect, but I do believe we should not attempt to destroy what the LORD did through them in their lives for the sake of trying to prove our own relevance. It is a shame that the only time we honor people is in their casket. Friend, dead people don’t hear the voices of appreciation. You should be sure to show your appreciation to people while they are alive.
Second, use the wisdom of the older generation to help you avoid making catastrophic mistakes. The older generation has gained wisdom from their successes and failures. You would be foolish to ignore the wisdom they have just because you want to prove how smart you are. If you were smart, you would not let the wisdom of the aged go to waste. The aged may not have the energy you like, but they do have the wisdom you need to help you go further than they were able to go. Don’t let the wisdom of the aged die with them. Glean every bit of wisdom from them while they are alive.
Third, purposely make time for the aged. One of the best things you can do is to spend time with an older person weekly. They will try to tell you that you don’t have to spend time with them, but they enjoy your visit more than you will ever know.
My friend, one day you are going to get old, and you are going to want to feel wanted and relevant when that happens. You should make it your goal to make sure that the older generation does not feel pushed away. Love them and learn from them; they have much wisdom from which you can learn.