The Advantages of Experience


experienceIt is said that when a person with experience meets a person with money, the person with experience will get the money. And the person with the money will get experience. (Leonard Lauder)

What makes experience so important, anyway? Because the person with experience is more apt to keep from making the mistakes that an inexperienced person will make. And, that’s because the experienced person has already paid the price for making those mistakes he’s already suffered. Therefore, the pain of learning from our mistakes teaches us to not make the same mistakes again and make better choices for achieving success. As they say, “Experience is the best teacher.”

Experience, for example, teaches wisdom. And wisdom comes with age. Job 12:12 declares, “Wisdom is with aged men. With long life is understanding,” (New American Standard Bible, NASB).

When younger, inexperienced persons listen to their more experienced elders, they will be more the wiser. Why? Because they will be able to prevent the kind of problems they would have if they followed the advice of their peers who’ve had little or no experience.

Case in point: When it was time for Rehoboam to reign as Israel’s new king in the place of his father, King Solomon, he was immediately faced with a serious situation that would impact his authority and the future of the nation. He was approached by some disgruntled citizens led by a rebel named Jeroboam. They simply requested to Rehoboam, “Your father made our yoke hard; now therefore lighten the hard service of your father and his heavy yoke which he put on us, and we will serve you.” Rehoboam said he’d give them his answer in three days.

The young king first consulted the elders who served his father. He wanted to hear their advice on how to respond to these rebellious people. The elders suggested to Rehoboam, “If you will be a servant to this people today, will serve them, grant them their petition, and speak good words to them, then they will be your servants forever.” But King Rehoboam didn’t heed their counsel. Rather, the king turned to his young peers and asked them what he should do about the matter. They said he should put a heavier yoke on these people than his father did and that he should tell these people, “My father disciplined you with whips, but I will discipline you with scorpions.”

When the third day came, Jeroboam and his people came to Rehoboam for his answer. It says, “And the king answered the people harshly, for he forsook the advice of the elders which they had given him, and he spoke to them according to the advice of the young men….” As a result of the king’s foolish decision, the people who supported Jeroboam rose up against the king and the whole nation became divided. In fact, Israel was split into two kingdoms. Jeroboam became the king of the northern kingdom, Israel, consisting of ten of the twelve tribes. And Rehoboam ended up king of the southern kingdom, Judah, consisting of the two remaining tribes. (See 1 Kings 12:1-24; 2 Chronicles 10:1-19.)

Experience provides the path for spiritual growth. The more experience we have, the more maturity we will gain. The Apostle Paul encouraged the church to “attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fulness of Christ,” Ephesians 4:13, NASB). As followers of Christ develop spiritual maturity, they will not be easily influenced by deceivers who manipulate them into false teachings and unhappy circumstances. For Paul goes on to say, As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves, and carried about my every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming,” (v. 14). Paul is pointing out that there is a better, more “grown up” way to experience maturity: “But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into him, who is the head, even Christ… (v. 15).

When we experience Christ in our lives, by applying his teachings and living according to his truth, we will experience blessings like peace (John 14:27) and joy (John 15:11). But we must keep in mind that experiencing Christ is not a onetime deal the moment you accept him into your life. No, it’s an ongoing, lifetime deal. This is another reason why experience is the best teacher — because he is always there to instruct us. Yes, we can always learn from experience if we’re willing to learn from the Master himself. In fact, experiencing Christ is the best experience you can ever have!

Here is an inspirational hymn, “Living for Jesus,”

Good News to YOU!
Pastor Michael

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