It seems to me that wisdom is hugely underrated and massively underused. When was the last time that you heard someone outside of a church context speak about the value of wisdom? Wisdom is a free gift that is available to anyone who wants it, but how many of us actually ask God for wisdom? Think about it, would you leave a beautifully wrapped Christmas present still sitting unopened in your house months after it was given to you? Of course not! We’d excitedly open the present and value it. And yet so many of us go through life without opening or even asking for the gift of wisdom.
Consider: What is wisdom and why do we need it?
Wisdom begins and ends with the Fear of the Lord. And it helps us to understand the difference between what is right and what is wrong in God’s sight. The word ‘understand’ is key here, because there’s a difference between knowing and understanding. To know is to be aware of something as a fact or truth whereas to understand is linked to a deeper and fuller realization. Let’s take exercise as an example. We may know that working out is good for us but we may not understand why. So knowing the difference between right and wrong is very different from understanding those differences. But that’s where wisdom can help us. Wisdom is the ability to discern and judge which parts of our knowledge are true and right. And we can call on that wisdom whenever we want.
Let’s take Chris Cooke as an example. Chris is a leader at Freedom Church and happens to be the wisest man I know. Chris knows the Bible. I mean, he really knows the Bible. But more than that, He understands the Bible. And because of that He’s able discern and judge what He knows to be true as he makes decisions in life. And that’s wisdom in action.
Context: Why bother?
The Bible is full of scripture about wisdom. Proverbs (in the Old Testament) and James (in the New Testament) in particular are known as “wisdom books”. So what’s the value of wisdom and why should we desire it? Proverbs 23 v 23 tells us “Buy the truth and do not sell it; buy wisdom, instruction, and understanding.” Later in Proverbs, we read that “Whoever trusts in their own minds is a fool, but they who walk in wisdom will be delivered.” I don’t know about you, but I want to walk in wisdom.
Over to you: Ask yourself…..
How do you make decisions in your daily life? Do you use wisdom or do you rely on knowledge?
Is wisdom something that you greatly desire and walk in? Was it always that way? What made the difference?