My personality type has always been the type to learn from other peoples' mistakes. From a very early age, I have had an observing-type mentality where I sit back and watch people who are older than me both in their successes and their troubles. I have found that it has helped me direct my thoughts and path through life. When I choose not to follow the lessons I learned, I usually end up in trouble. Little did I know that God had already written about this in His word. (Prov 22:6 - detailed later)
I have been learning recently that the thought processes of a child are usually directly correlated with those of their parents or great influences early on in their life. If parents spend all the money they make, then they are demonstrating a behavior for their children to follow whenever they begin to handle their own money. Proverbs 22:6 (New International Version) Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it. We have to realize that we are always leading by example. It is important and impactful for us to demonstrate christlike qualities at all times because childrens' eyes are always on us. We must allow God to change our way of thinking. The New Testament word "repentance" means "to change your mind." We must allow God to transform our mind through the Holy Spirit.
Parents being older have a certain wisdom about them. The nature of a child at a young age is to come to their parents for protection, then during adolecense try to do things on their own. By the time we are teenagers we think we know everything there is to know about life, even more than our parents. (Funny how parents had to go through their teenage years as well...but we don't consider this as teens.) Then we reach our 20's and 30's. Our minds mature. We see that we've made mistakes. Once again we call on someone older to help us understand certain situations. We use mentors, parents, pastors, people whom we can look up to for solid wisdom and advice. We look up to God for direction.
I stumbled upon this verse today in Proverbs 13:1 A wise son heeds his father's instruction, but a mocker does not listen to rebuke. As products of our parents, we should be encouraged to seek their advice with an open mind. I know that as I have aged to the ripe age of 25 I have gone through times of stuggle with not wanting to follow my parents advice. Well the truth is this verse shows that God has given our parents divine wisdom and knowledge to raise and help Him shape us. In comparing this to allowing God to be our eternal parent the reward comes at the time when we look back and realize the successful path was better because we listened to Him.
Call you parent or mentor today and thank them for the time that they put into raising and shaping you.