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Friday, January 30, 2015

Finding Wisdom

Recently, we lost something. Our search was so extensive that we were not merely looking from room to room but got right down to moving the furniture, sweeping every place with a flashlight in order to find it. We searched everywhere; that is, we searched in every place anyone would be. It did not make sense to get into the crawl spaces or get in our car and drive to some to another location to look because we did not lose the item anywhere except in a certain place. When we lose something, we look in the place we lost it. 

Sometimes we have an idea to look for something that is not lost so we chase the idea in the realm we expect to make a discovery. For example, when I was young we explored the Rocky Mountains and spent some time looking for gold. We did not look in the sky (though the color could be found in the sunset) and we did not look in the trees (though the Aspens in fall are quite aflame in gold); rather, we looked near abandoned mines and panned the streams below for even the smallest nugget. 

Where does one search to find wisdom? Rest assured that wisdom is not lost by us, but is waiting to be discovered. Proverbs 2 gives us a number of objectives to help us successfully find wisdom: 

If wisdom is something you will receive and store up, then: 
  • listen, shaping the heart to receive, just like when we strain to hear something and cup a hand around our ear to redirect the sound (2:2) 
  • call out for it. What happens when you pray for understanding? What kind of God would not answer or decline this kind of prayer? (2:3) 
  • dig (2:4). Just as precious metals are found in the dirt, you must be looking in the right context! 
If we listen, pray and dig by reading God’s unchanging Word, then you will be able to understand the fear of the LORD, the knowledge of God (2:5). Do you see the logic? 

We are told to look God-ward to find wisdom and when we do, look what happens: we gain wisdom (2:6) because He is the source of what we need to know AND the ability to understand it (2:7). 

God is: 
  • the storehouse of wisdom (2:7), 
  • the very treasure itself! the shield for those who walk behind it (2:8a,b); 
  • the sustainer of His way in those who obey (2:8c). 
In short: apprehend God, then you will know what is right and just and good; and wisdom will take up residence in your soul and protect you (2:9-11).

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