Rabbi David Wolpe has a beautiful D’var Torah in this week’s Jewish Week:
[A]dults tend to look back at childhood with a glow of warm nostalgia. The problems seem trivial, the pains a prelude. Wiser are the reflections of Vera Brittan in "Testament of Youth":"Why, I wonder, do people who at one time or another have all been young themselves, and who ought therefore to know better, generalize so suavely and so mendaciously about the golden hours of youth -- that period of life when every sorrow seems permanent and every setback insuperable?"
When we are young, we do not know that our pains are temporary. As George Eliot said, children have no memories of outlived sorrow. When we are older, we can look back on life and see that against the background of permanence is constant change; the anguish that seemed so acute today passes tomorrow. The advice that Johnson gave Boswell, to always look from the perspective of a year hence, means nothing to a child, though parents often urge it. Children live in an eternal now.
That may be one reason why the Torah ends with the soaring, profound recounting of the people’s journey. Moses is urging memory, but also subtly reminding us that the people have endured what seemed at the moment to be lasting: Israel continues despite the Golden Calf, despite Korach, despite the spies and the grumblings, despite their fear.
They are no longer children. They now know they can endure.