Are You Listening?

Just a few days ago….I had a “Gladys” moment.

If your name is Gladys, I apologize in advance; but for years when we would do something funny, embarrassing or clumsy in our family, we would call each other Gladys! So here goes my recent “Gladys” moment… I was at the beach….on a girls’ trip and shopping (go figure!). I was walking along and tripped…..yes, I stepped off the curb and went sprawling everywhere….purse flying, cell phone flying, feet flying and ego “flying out the window!”

It must have been a pretty sight….I gathered myself up and looked around and no one apparently saw the “Gladys moment” but me…..my cell phone was in a million pieces! Thank God I was not hurt…but I dreaded what was ahead of me……going to the phone store……and getting a replacement! It would take at least an hour and then the dreaded……downloading of the apps, the contacts, and, most importantly, remembering all my passwords!!! I have iCloud and I have backed up all my stuff…..but it was still going to be challenging for me!

A challenge it was. Just waiting in line….going through all the decisions…..and finally having the new phone activated. Expensive. Then the real challenge began in restoring all the information on my phone…….believe it or not I was sweating, wondering if I could do it.

I walked down to the beach where all the “girls” were with my new phone in hand. Most of the young women are in their 20’s so they are pretty tech savvy. I expressed my “STRESS LEVEL” and they could visibly see my face all contorted. Then, the most amazing thing happened…between our daughter, Collins, and my adopted daughter, Sarah Parker, they took my phone and it was as if they turned into “Madea” from the movie, “Diary of a Mad Black Woman”. Their fingers were flying and their focus was intense, similar to Madea using a calculator in the movie.

Within minutes, my phone was COMPLETELY RESTORED…even when I couldn’t remember my passwords, they were able to change the passwords, have them emailed to me and kept sailing through the restoration of my phone! I was AMAZED at their navigation of electronics….and technology. It was, in my terms, a cake walk to them….in twenty year old terms, a “breeze!”

What is the point of the story? We can learn from each other. If you are 52 or older, don’t think you cannot learn from young people! God uses youth to teach us many things and enables them with knowledge and understanding too! I grew up in the days when the mindset was…”Kids are to be seen but not heard”. I do understand there are things kids can’t possibly know because they have not lived enough life….but God manifests Himself in the “youth of our world” as well as in the elderly.

Daniel 1:7, “To these four young men God gave knowledge and understanding of all kinds of literature and learning. And Daniel could understand visions and dreams of all kinds.” WE can all learn from each other. Too many times we don’t stop and listen to our “youth.” I am the first to acknowledge that there are the “young” and ignorant, but there are also the “old” and stubborn!

I am talking to myself here. Thank God, He has opened my eyes, heart and mind to show me that those young people who have allowed me into their world have much to teach me, and not just about technology! Their perspective has allowed me to grow in Christ and has enabled me to help share God and His love and Word much more effectively.

Let me take it one step further. How often do we not listen to someone or enlist their help because they seem an unlikely source? It makes me think of I Corinthians 1:27, “But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong;” I”m not at all saying young people are foolish. All I am saying is don’t discount someone’s help or advice for the wrong reasons.

I encourage you to apply Proverbs 1:5, “Let the wise listen–and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance.” We all should listen more, especially to our youth!

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