** Wisdom crieth without; she uttereth her voice in the streets: she crieth in the chief place of concourse,
in the openings of the gates:…** Proverbs 1:20,21
We all have all had someone ask us to pray that they would have wisdom in a certain situation. It may have been about finances, or relationships or a career change. It may have been about how to care for a sick loved one or how to find a good church.
Whatever the need is, they are asking for wisdom to make a wise decision.
A great place to guide someone that is seeking wisdom is to the book of Proverbs.
If we read chapter 1 of Proverbs, we can find a few things that help us see where wisdom comes from.
Starting with verse 1 and 8, we are told that wisdom starts with listening to our parents and remembering the lessons they told us over time.
My mother still reminds me that ‘friends come and go, but family is forever.’ This little phrase helps me to remember to not let friendship issues tie up my heart or put them ahead of family commitments. It’s good to have friends but we shouldn’t become unbalanced concerning them. The Bible tells me that God comes first, family second and friends third.
Secondly, verses 20,21 tell us that wisdom is all around us. We just need to learn how to hear it. We need to be conscious of the lessons right in front of us. Jesus used every day situations and nature to teach us how to live wisely and compassionately. We need to engage in life, and think through each challenge that presents itself.
We can ask ourselves the question we learned in Sunday School…What would Jesus do? What similar situation was He in that would help us to navigate ours?
A few days ago, we talked about stairwell lessons. Wisdom is one of those stairwells.
The first step is knowledge. We can’t jump to the third or fourth step without getting hurt, so we need to take the first step to learn the basics. If we want to be an architect, we need to take some classes on building codes, landscape, accurate measuring and calculations, electrical work, plumbing and more. If we want to deal with life wisely, we need some basic information. We can start in Genesis and work our way through to Revelation. We can attend church to listen to someone who already has wisdom. We can join a Bible Study or Life Group. We can read the book of Proverbs over and over again. We need to lay a foundation of information to draw from.
Then we are ready for step two…understanding. Again, we can go deeper into the lessons that Jesus teaches us in the gospel. We can think about how he managed situations, to know when to stand and fight and when to retreat. We can study how he treated people. We can learn leadership skills from Him. We can see that He was living out Deuteronomy 6 in teaching his disciples everywhere they went with whatever was right in front of them.
Step three is where we are gaining some experience and discernment. We are learning how to examine every situation and find Truth lessons to apply to them.
What do I do when someone treats me badly? We can go to the Sermon on the Mount.
What do I do when I lose my job? We can search out God’s promises on caring for His children’s needs.
What do I do when tragedy strikes? We can read the book of Job or the Song of Solomon.
It’s all right at our fingertips. We just need to learn how to use it all.
Once we do, when we have climbed again and again the steps of knowledge, understanding, discernment and experience, we will arrive at the higher step of wisdom. It will all come together and it won’t be such an effort to deal with life’s challenges. We can stop and pray in any situation and the answer will be there in our heads and in our hearts. The Lord will bring it all back to remembrance.
The Proverbs tells us that wisdom is shouting at us every we go. All we need to do is listen.