But he rejected the advice of the elders who had advised him and consulted with the young men who had grown up with him, the ones serving him. – 2 Chronicles 10:8
It’s a common fault of each generation to believe that it knows more than the previous one about current culture and how to lead into the future. And while we may be able to learn from the mistakes of others, it always seems like we would rather learn from our own! Wisdom is usually available from our elders, but we are often not even wise enough (in the first place) to ask for it. It is a confusing cycle when we lack the wisdom to ask for wisdom. So, how do you escape?
First, ask God for wisdom. You are going to need it and He gives to all generously, without reproach (James 1:5). Second, read a chapter of Proverbs every day for an entire month … and keep reading until you begin to see the wisdom of God overflowing into your life and speech. Finally, locate some wise elders or colleagues (those who bear evidence of a life saturated by God’s truth), ask for their advice, and … unlike Rehoboam … listen to them. Leaders who have experienced failure have some idea of how to avoid it.
A man begins cutting his wisdom teeth the first time he bites off more than he can chew. – Herb Caen