The One Year Wisdom Challenge #4- January 25, 2021
With so much confusion and misinformation concerning world and national events, wisdom is a precious commodity. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have insight and understanding about things swirling around us?
Wisdom can sort truth from fiction.
Wisdom discerns the true character of another.
Wisdom applies God’s truths to confusing circumstances and makes sense of them.
The strength of wisdom operating in our lives is completely attainable for every God-follower. He tells us that all through the book of Proverbs. He also tells us that one deadly sin can derail the whole wisdom train for us. What is the sin that blocks the doorway to wisdom?
What is the sin that got Satan tossed out of heaven?
What is the sin that always tells us it knows better than anyone else or God and is always wrong? Every. Time.
Greatness is eroded by pride. Think Samson and King Saul.
Wisdom will not co-exist with pride. Think Samson and King Saul.
There’s a movie entitled, “The King’s Speech,” which shares a modern-day story of greatness humbling itself and gaining wisdom. It’s the story of King George the VI who was forced to become king of England after his father’s death and then his brother’s abdication of the throne. Albert (his real name) never wanted to be king, preferring a quiet life. Worse yet, he had a debilitating stutter that became especially pronounced around others outside of his family.
The story takes place in the 1930’s. Britain stands on the brink of World War II. The country needs to hear from their king. A speech must be made on radio. Albert is utterly incapable of doing it without bringing great shame to himself and the crown.
In desperation the queen seeks out a speech therapist who is highly recommended, Lionel Logue. When she meets with Lionel, she uses the name “Mrs. Johnson” and he does not recognize her. He spells out his program and fees and then the following exchange occurs.
– Lionel Logue: Well, we need to have your hubby pop by. Tuesday would be good. He can give me his personal details, I’ll make a frank appraisal, and then we’ll take it from there. – Queen Elizabeth: Doctor, forgive me, I don’t have a “hubby,” we don’t “pop,” nor do we ever talk about our private lives. No, you must come to us. – Lionel Logue: I’m sorry, Mrs. Johnson. My game, my turf, my rules.
The king and queen desperately needed Lionel’s expertise and wisdom but thought they could obtain it on their own terms. Lionel held his ground, by the way. The King came to him for all his sessions. After this initial humbling, there is a progression of meekness that comes to pass in the King’s relationship with Lionel. It begins immediately in their first session. The King, whom Lionel now recognizes, laments his inability to control his tongue. All the right words are in his brain but don’t come out his mouth.
“- Lionel Logue: Oh, surely a prince’s brain knows what its mouth’s doing? – King George VI: You’re not well acquainted with royal princes, are you?”
This self-deprecating comment is already a distance from the man who wouldn’t even come to the initial appointment. A man who was used to people literally waiting on him hand and foot. Lionel had wisdom this proud man needed. The only way to access it was for the king to humble himself.
In Proverbs chapter 9, King Solomon describes a similar scenario by writing as if wisdom were a person inviting people to her home.
“Wisdom has built her house; she has hewn her seven pillars. 2 She has slaughtered her beasts; she has mixed her wine; she has also set her table. 3 She has sent out her young women to call form the highest places in the town, 4 Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” To him who lacks sense she says, 5 “Come, eat of my bread and drink of the wine I have mixed. 6 Leave your simple ways, and live, and walk in the way of insight,” Proverbs 9:2-6 ESV.
Just like Lionel Logue informed the Queen, wisdom says, “If you want my help, you have to come my house.” Then King Solomon paints an interesting picture of the kind of person who will come to Wisdom’s house.
Wisdom hunters recognize they might be underinformed.
In verse four Wisdom is blunt. She’s inviting people who are willing to admit they are simple and lack sense about some things. I don’t like admitting I don’t know stuff that is obvious or old news to others. My flesh feels embarrassed. Foolish flesh. The best part of me, where Holy Spirit lives, says, “Well sister, you better start listening and learning cause clearly this one’s got the leg up on this.”
Wisdom hunters are willing to leave their ways behind to learn new ways.
In verse 6 Wisdom tells us to leave our simple ways behind and walk in insight. Our pride doesn’t like that either. Those are OUR ways. We developed them over time and experiences. Well, that may be true, but God is always trying to change us up from glory to glory. Maybe your ways were insightful for a previous time in history or a different set of circumstances. Pride will cling to them. Humility will understand that God is always doing something new. Humility will acknowledge other God-followers who may have discerned his new ways more quickly than we did. Humility will let go of the old and grab onto the new.
Wisdom hunters appreciate correction.
After Wisdom speaks, Solomon talks directly to the reader and says this about the wise and the arrogant.
“Whoever corrects a scoffer gets himself abuse, and he who reproves a wicked man incurs injury. 8 Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you,” Proverbs 9:7-8 ESV.
Wise people receive valid criticisms graciously. Proud people don’t. They become defensive.
Wise people appreciate those who have the guts to correct them when they are wrong. Proud people get angry that you dared to infer they did something wrong.
I’m certain that my arrogance has stood in the way at times, of me receiving and assimilating valuable wisdom. Maybe it was because I didn’t like to admit I lacked insight on something. Maybe it was because I didn’t like the person possessing that understanding.
Wisdom and pride will not peacefully co-exist within us. We will choose one or the other. For me, I don’t want to be a chowderhead about what is happening in our nation and the world. I certainly don’t want to miss out on God’s unfolding plan for the greatest spiritual awakening our country has ever experienced.
Are you ready to say, “I need some more insight and understanding?”
Are you ready to leave your current paradigms and methods behind?
Are you willing to receive correction?
God is searching for humble people to whom he may impart wisdom. I want to be one of them. How about you? Here’s this week’s memory verse, short and to the point.
“Towards the scorners he (God) is scornful, but to the humble he gives favor,” Proverbs 3:34. ESV.