A friend recently gave me a book written by Hyatt Moore entitled, It’s About Life. In that book there is a short chapter that reflects on the “good old days.” Hyatt called my attention to the verse in Eccl.7:10 that says, “Do not say, ‘Why were the old days better than these?’ For it is not wise to ask such questions.”
Since we all have selective memories, it is a fair thought to ponder a bit…were the good old days really that much better?
Were there really simpler times? Did time roll by slower in decades of the past? Were children more respectful? Were folks more appreciative? In general, was there an easier time than now? Can we look longingly behind us and be satisfied that things were better “back then?”
Consider a few facts that Hyatt mentions:
“Back then” if you had a headache, a doctor might bore a few holes in your skull to relieve the pressure. (I sure am grateful for Excedrin!)
“Back then” political opponents burned the opposing group at the stake. We might have wild elections but usually no one loses their life in the after math.
“Back then” the average life span was 35 years. And plagues ran their course with no medical intervention. Dentists worked without Novocain and wild animals roamed the earth without a zookeeper in sight.
“Back then” only the aristocrats had an education and the poor served the rich with no hope of advancement.
Bottom line, I think that the writer of Ecclesiastes was onto something important. There are no “good old days.” There is yesterday and it was different. There was the day before yesterday and it was different still. But neither of those “days” was great. Each era has its own challenges and blessings. Each era has its own sophistication and improvements. Each era unfolds as time marches to the beat of God’s drum.
This week let’s all resist the temptation to look back. 2013 is gone. We are into 2014. It will no doubt have its challenges and blessings as well. But rather that just longing for a time period behind us instead let’s shout out:
“This is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it!” (Ps. 118:24)
By His Grace and for His Glory,
Sherry L. Worel