Pastor Tim Burt
I’m sure 99 out of 100 people would say wisdom is important. But God esteems it much higher than that. Proverbs 4:7-8 (NIV) tells us that it’s the principle thing saying, “Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Esteem her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you.”
God desires for each and every human being to grow in wisdom! But not just in any wisdom. True wisdom is from God! God desires us to grow in His wisdom! What is wisdom? It’s the heart and mind behind all of God’s decisions. He doesn’t want His wisdom to be a secret! He has made it known in His Word, the Bible, to those that seek it. God’s wisdom helps us consistently make good and better decisions and live our life out prudently and reverently before Him.
Prideful people think they know or can figure out everything. Inflated pride or ego will make you a fool and rob you of the very wisdom that could transform your life!
Got teaches us that seeking advice is part of the process of seeking wisdom. Seeking advice is advisable, but critical that it comes from the right person. Why? Because bad advice is abundant and cheap and foolish people air their foolish thoughts freely. Maybe never more than with the introduction of social media! Proverbs 26:12 (NIV) says “See a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.” It’s godly advice that God wants us to seek! Proverbs 24:6 (NKJV) says, “For by wise counsel you will wage your own war, And in a multitude of counselors there is safety.” Pastors, Bible teachers, Bible-loving Christians mature in their faith, and good Christian books can help be a great source of advice and wisdom as long as they have some knowledge of the area of wisdom needed. No one but God is wise in everything so it’s important to seek out godly people wise in the areas of needed advice.
The process of SEEKING godly wisdom is this. First, you grow in godly knowledge of an area by learning what the Bible says about it. Secondly, you begin to put that knowledge to work in your life so you can experience its working. And thirdly, as you use that knowledge through the experience again and again, you grow in the wisdom of how to skillfully use it. That’s growing in wisdom.
Let me give you an example. A newly married man doesn’t like how his wife just takes and uses his tools around the house and doesn’t put them back. He yells at her for it. Now she’s mad at him and so they are both mad at and not talking to each other. This guy mentions in his small group of buddies that his wife is mad at him and won’t speak to him because he yelled at her. He tells the group of men why. A man in the group says, Let me show you a scripture. Proverbs 15:1 (NIV) “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” The friend says, You should have approached your wife gently and just told her what was bothering you and asked her to put things back as soon as she was finished with them. Or better yet, get her, her own toolbox! Now go back to her, apologize for yelling, and just ask her to put the tools back as soon as she is done with them. He has now received God’s wisdom and godly advice on what to do. He does what his friend advised him to do and it worked wonderfully. (And she loves her own toolbox!) He can now apply that piece of wisdom in a multitude of areas in his life. Gentle conversations are far better than angry ones!
Everyone experiences times when they need on-the-spot wisdom! That should be the exception and not the rule. But, in those times, it’s important to know that when you pray and ask God for wisdom, He will give you His grace—His supernatural help at the moment. God will show you things you could not possibly know yourself because you’ve never experienced them before. Solomon was the recipient of this kind of wisdom at the beginning of his kingly reign. He was a young man, a new king, and inexperienced in his new role. Two women were brought before him both claiming to be mothers of the same child. One was obviously lying. What wisdom and experience could this new and young king have to discern how to get to the truth? The answer is none. Solomon leaned completely on the Lord for the wisdom he needed in the moment and because of it, we see God give him what the Bible calls, the word of wisdom.
1 Kings 3:23-28 NIV we read, Solomon said, “This one says, ‘My son is alive and your son is dead,’ while that one says, ‘No! Your son is dead and mine is alive.'” Then the king said, “Bring me a sword.” So they brought a sword for the king. He then gave an order: “Cut the living child in two and give half to one and half to the other.” The woman whose son was alive was filled with compassion for her son and said to the king, “Please, my lord, give her the living baby! Don’t kill him!” But the other said, “Neither I nor you shall have him. Cut him in two!” Then the king gave his ruling: “Give the living baby to the first woman. Do not kill him; she is his mother.” When all Israel heard the verdict the king had given, they held the king in awe, because they saw that God had blessed Him with great wisdom to administer justice.”
This was wisdom outside of the natural progression of getting wisdom. It was supernatural and a gift of God’s grace to accomplish the task God had given Solomon to do at the moment. We can always believe in God’s grace for wisdom when we are executing something He has given us to do.
There are times when we will need exactly this kind of wisdom—supernaturally, void of previous experience. Again, this will be the exception, not the rule. As I said, God prefers that we learn His word and grow in wisdom so that it becomes deeply rooted in within us. But in those times of needing wisdom for what we’ve never yet experienced that needs to be dealt with on the spot, we can know that God will equip us with wisdom through His grace for those situations. So, seek and grow in the wisdom of God’s word and remember, “Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. Esteem her, and she will exalt you; embrace her, and she will honor you.”
James 1:5 (NIV) If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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