Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, and let your heart cheer you in the days of your youth; walk in the ways of your heart, and in the sight of your eyes; but know that for all these God will bring you into judgment.
He was wise for a young person, knowing that time was of the essence, understanding that youth is fleeting. We are young for only a short time, and the past cannot be revisited. He wanted to enjoy his life while he could afford some recklessness, and there is where his wisdom ended. He followed his heart but did not understand that his heart was desperately wicked. His pursuit of youthful pleasure was taken with abandon and without regard for consequences. The result was a youth lived too quickly, precious years squandered without memory of their occurring, and a young man who grew old too soon.
God gives us a period of youth to be enjoyed, and we have two options. We can enjoy our youth in a way that glorifies him and shows him our appreciation for that blessing. Unfortunately, most of us do not possess the wisdom necessary to take that path. It seems the more common approach is to waste our youth with frivolity and wickedness, foolishly thinking that we are invincible and untouchable just because we are young. The problem with this kind of living is not just that it defies and offends God but that it comes with real natural consequences. One does not even have to be young to live with this kind of foolishness. By the same token, one can be old and still live with wise youthfulness.
Some say that age is nothing but a number, that youth is just a state of mind. I must agree. I was one of the ones who traded my youth for debauchery and irresponsibility. I am much older now, but that does not mean that I have lost my youth. I can live with that kind of joy and spirit today but with wisdom. With Christ, I can live joyful and free without worry for judgment, and I will want to live in a way that glorifies the Lord. Being young at heart is ideal in this world of darkness as long as our hearts are in line with his. Father, show us the folly of our youth, lead us to repentance, and help us to live with youthful and joyful spirits always.