Last week, Julie and I went to see “Creed.” This is the newest installment in the Rocky series, in which Rocky trains Apollo Creed’s son as a fighter. The next day we went with my parents and some friends along with our son, Haynes, to see the new Star Wars movie. Of course, this is the latest of that science fiction saga. Both of the originating movies in the series came in out in the 1970’s.
Rocky is now an old man, where he started as the young, up and coming boxer. Luke Skywalker has a gray beard, where he started as the young, up and coming Jedi. Decades have passed, perspective has changed and life has presented its twists and turns. The gray hair of wisdom has replaced the naiveté of youth. The passion of promise is replaced with the sageness of experience. Sage wisdom isn’t free, however, the cost of wisdom is the challenge of trials.
I was ten years old when my dad took me to the first Star Wars. My son is seven as I took him and I was thankful that my dad was there with us. His beard is gray. For that matter, so is mine. The decades have produced depth and are adding to legacy.
These characters in these movies were like old friends. These are old friends who remind us of a time gone by. More than interest in their respective stories, there was an emotional connection to who and where I was compared to who and where I am now. Since both movies are part of a greater offering of a series of stories, the connection of where life was compared to where it is now spans decades.
One of my favorite verses, especially at the marking of a new year is Psalm 90:12, “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”
Time is passing, things are changing. We all age and we all move from promise to reflection. The appreciation for life provides context to our circumstances. If we’ll realize our place in context of a span of years and our span of years in the context of eternity, we’ll value the “now” differently. We’ll value the new year differently.
When we recognize that the number of our days is finite but the context of our living is infinite, we will appreciate the opportunity in the subset. We’ll soak up the Godly wisdom from the temporal challenges and our heart will be changed. God will move us and change us and shape us and mold us even as dreams disappoint and hopes are calibrated. The depth of knowing Him is from the inside out and he will reveal Himself within us.
You’ve been given another new year; what are you going to do with Him in it?