The Good Old Days


Adapted from “...Yet Trouble Came…” by W.T. Hamilton

No one ever expressed a desire to fellowship with the good old days with more emotion than Job did. No one ever had a right to long for those “good old days” more than he, because it was such a sharp contrast to the way things used to be. Job said, “Oh that I were as in months past, as in the days when God preserved I was in the days of youth...when my children were about me...when I washed my steps with butter, and the rock poured me out rivers of oil” (Job 29:2-6).

For some, those days of old were not so good. They would rather forget some of the hardships, heartaches, and failures of the past. Those days of old will bring a smile, but to relive them would be a disappointing experience. Solomon said, “Say not thou, what is the cause that the former days were better than these? For thou dost not inquire wisely concerning this” (Ecclesiastes 7:10). 

One explanation for why reviewing the past might not be such a pleasant experience is that times change, and we have changed too. What we used to like, we no longer care for. What we once enjoyed is now only tolerated. What we once dreaded may become a pleasant experience. Our appetite is the same way. Turnip greens used to be a form of punishment! Pizza used to be a real treat! It may have changed now.

When we were growing up, we always wanted to be a different age. At twelve, we wanted to be thirteen. At fourteen, we wanted to be sixteen. At seventeen, we wanted to be eighteen. At thirty, we would not mind being eighteen again. At fifty, we would not mind being thirty.

Every age is wonderful. We just need to learn to fit into the age we are and be content (Philippians 4:11), and let the strength of Jesus help us deal with the challenges each age brings. We could eliminate a lot of wasted energy of pondering over the “good old days” and wishing our lives away waiting for tomorrow, if we lived in the present. Today is the greatest day of all. “This is the day Jehovah hath made, we will rejoice and be glad in it” (Psalm 118:24).

It is impossible to “turn back the clock”. Time, people, and circumstances change. We cannot be homesick for yesterday. We can adjust by learning from those “good old days”. Accept the fact that changes will take place. Be prepared for the future, because that is where we are headed.