America’s worship of youth is, at one level, simply illogical. People want to be some ideal age (such as 18 or 25) so that they have all their best years ahead of them: career, marriage, family, retirement, with none of that “capital” spent. At that ideal age, they will have done few of the things that constitute life. It is all in the future.
But the minute they start spending this capital, they are in fact aging. By the time they have done all the things that constitute a rich and full life, they are old. Then they wish they were young again. But if they were young again, they would not have lived that rich and full life.
If the youth-worshipers are right, we should all want to die young. But we don’t, and in fact consider the premature death of the young to be a great loss.
Let’s start honoring age as indispensable and the aged as valuable assets to the rest of us. They have the accumulated experiences and (we hope) the wisdom to help the rest of us on our life journey.
About Stan Guthrie
Stan Guthrie is an editor at large for Christianity Today magazine and for the Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview. His latest book is God's Story in 66 Verses. He also is author of All that Jesus Asks: How His Questions Can Teach and Transform Us, Missions in the Third Millennium: 21 Key Trends for the 21st Century, and A Concise Guide to Bible Prophecy. He is co-author of The Sacrament of Evangelism. Besides authoring, writing, and editing books, Stan is a literary agent, bringing together good authors, good books, and good publishers.
Stan writes the monthly Priorities colum for BreakPoint.org. He has appeared on National Public Radio's Tell Me More, WGN's Milt Rosenberg program, and many Christian shows, including The Eric Metaxas Show and Moody Radio's New Day Florida. A licensed minister and an inspirational speaker, he served as moderator for the Christian Book Expo panel discussion, Does the God of Christianity Exist, and What Difference Does It Make?
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