Monday, June 1, 2020

Seeking Godly Wisdom

"Wisdom is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her."  – Proverbs 3:15

 My definition of wisdom is knowledge plus experience.  Lately a number of people have been telling me about how wise I am.  Frankly it surprised me because I don’t consider myself to be wise – at least not compared to those I consider wise. I suppose it is like the adage, “A one-eyed man is king among the blind.” In other words, being perceived as wise is relative to the people you are around.  If I know more than you about some topic then I am a relative expert.  Upon reflection, their comments caused me to remember that God is at work in me – in all of His children. We are being conformed into the image – likeness – of Jesus.

 For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son” – Romans 8:29

 I can look in a mirror and know that I must stop eating Carbs because I am packing on the pounds – but when I look in a mirror I cannot see that I look more like Jesus. That is revealed by other people and what they see in me … in you. At the same time, it is a reminder that I am not the man I used to be and you are not the man or woman you used to be.  That reminds me of a quote. 

 I am not what I ought to be, I am not what I want to be, I am not what I hope to be in another world; but still I am not what I once used to be, and by the grace of God I am what I am.” – John Newton, author of Amazing Grace

 So back to wisdom …. My definition of wisdom is a natural one.  You can apply knowledge and experience for beneficial living. Perhaps avoiding past mistakes. Even giving good advice to others that are seeking advice.  Giving advice to those who don’t want it, who didn’t ask for it, is casting the proverbial pearls before swine.  Your words will be trampled underfoot – although they might have great value to the hears, they are unappreciated. They fall on deaf ears and are rejected by hardened hearts. Although you may care for the people you want to give advice to, there is wisdom in knowing when not to speak. Wisdom is no telling someone something they already know, it is giving the insight into what they already know or perhaps have not considered.  But they must be seeking it.  Some once said the definition of nagging is “telling someone something they already know.” We are all guilty of that – especially when we see someone we care about is making life choices that will be harmful to them.

 Spiritual wisdom defies the age of the one who has it.  It is possible to be spiritually wise and not have white hair.  Spiritual wisdom comes from God. But I guess you already know that because everything spiritual comes from God.  Wisdom is not just something that you have to benefit others. It should be of a benefit to the one who has it as well.  Following your own advice if you will.  So spiritual wisdom might be defined as “Applied Spiritual Understanding.” Reflecting back to the four ways that God speaks to us, by the Spirit through the Word, prayer, circumstance and other Believers; God speaks through other Believers as they convey spiritual wisdom – insight into the ways of God.

 " If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him" - James 1:5

 Spiritual wisdom is, well, spiritual at its source.  It makes sense that if we understand its value for right living then we would want to have it. We would see it out. As we seek to know God more and apply the Spiritual truth revealed to us, then we see and understand the world from God’s perspective.  As we understand the “Right” intended by God we see the “wrong” that the world considers “right”. We have insight into life that cannot be taught or gleaned from books or even long life.  It comes from God. And when that wisdom is shared to those who are seeking it, their souls are refreshed like taking a drink of cool water on a hot day. It is something other-worldly that cannot be explained, but felt in the soul. 

 So, when someone tells me I am wise – I am humbled and grateful to God. Because at that moment I am reminded that “I am not what I once used to be, and by the grace of God I am what I am

 So my friend, my prayer for you this day would be the same as Paul prayed for the church are Ephesus.

 "I have not stopped thanking God for you. I pray for you constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of God." - Ephesians 1:16-17


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