When 70 year old Ben spots an advert for a senior internship he decides to take up the call, he’s having an okay retirement but he needs a challenge, this could just be it. Although Jules the Boss doesn’t like the idea she lets him hang around, and little by little the resourceful Ben begins to do what he does best, help people. This includes tidying up the messiest desk in America, offering to be the boss’s chauffer when he spots the driver taking a sneaky drink, housebreaking to delete a mistakenly sent email, and offering relationship advice to a work colleague.
Saying sorry may just be the biggest challenge in Christendom. Jason has avoided the ancient art of eye-to-eye apologising by sending texts and emails. With sobbing emoticons no less! Surely a sad face will do the job. Er… nope, says Ben. There’s nothing like a good old fashioned, face to face bean-spilling. Admitting he was wrong, and humbly saying sorry out loud is most likely Jason’s best chance of putting things right. I can think of a hundred times, nay probably a thousand, when the word ‘sorry’ seemed so hard for me to say. I think Elton John once penned a song about all that too.
When the great and good King David spotted an alfresco bath-time across the rooftops it led to a whole world of trouble. And just when he thought he’d got away with it, what do you know, Nathan the prophet drops by and tells him a tale about a rich shepherd stealing a poor neighbour’s sheep. David convicts himself, by demanding the rich man pay for his misdemeanour, and Nathan slowly nods and gives the king a knowing look. David gets the point and pens Psalm 51, his prayer of saying sorry, confessing his guilt. Not only to God, but for the whole world to see down the ages. For all of us to pray for ourselves. Ben is a little like Nathan, not afraid to call a spade a spade, or an apology an apology. These days so many things are dressed up to be cool, people don’t apparently cry anymore, they ‘tear up’. Well, apologising will always be a tough call, I always find it so hard, but humility is underrated these days, and as hard as it can be, is so much more precious than being cool. It’s a godly currency. And hopefully wise men like Nathan and Ben will always be around to remind us of these things.
The Bible celebrates the wisdom that can come with age. When everyone else was looking the wrong way, on a bustling, noisy morning in the temple, a woman of some years, who’d spent a lot of time in prayer, spotted what most others missed. A young couple shuffling in with a tiny baby in their arms. Here was the Saviour she’d been waiting for, not riding on a snorting white charger, but vulnerable and tiny. God smaller than expected. And with her age and wisdom Anna had the eyes to notice. (Luke 2 vv 36-38)