A friend, who is my age, said to me recently, “Please stop writing about aging, you’re making me feel old.” So this is about youth. My grandson Price is twelve years old. He loves baseball, hunting, and fishing. His room is a collection of “game balls.” He has already killed two deer – one with a bow and arrow. He has caught bigger fish as a child, than I’ve caught as an adult. So in the last couple of years it has been a joy to watch him launch out into new arenas; to explore. He played President Lyndon Johnson in a school play, picked up a saxophone and mastered it enough to play in the school Christmas concert, and he took up soccer when no one in his family even knew when – and when not to yell at the games. While I did take a drama class in High School and scored a part in the Senior Play, my musical career of playing a trombone, ended in the second private lesson, when the teacher quit; and growing up in Texas, soccer is what they played in some country far away. Price’s adventurous spirit reminds me of an anonymous quote, often misattributed to Mark Twain, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do, than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” And as you might imagine, it also reminded me of a scripture, when Jesus was twelve years old and went exploring Jerusalem on his own, ending up in the Temple, “Listing . . . and asking questions” (Luke 2:46). Orators have spoken it, poets have rhymed it, authors have written it, and musicians have sung it – “Oh to be young again.”
Dr. Dan Crawford, Senior Professor at Southwestern Baptist Seminary, is the WestCoast Baptist Association’s Spiritual Life & Leadership Mentor. Follow Dan on Twitter @DrDanRC and Facebook www.facebook.com/dan.crawford.