One of the sad truths about growing older is that you are continually learning more sad truths. First, you learn that your parents lied to you about the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus. Later on you learn that money really doesn’t grow on trees, that almost nothing works out like it does in the movies, and that cute little puppies grow up to be dogs that shed a lot of hair, destroy your house, and cost more than your children did. (Do I sound a little bitter?)
One of those truths for me is that being old does not automatically make you wise. AARP says I’m a senior when I hit 50, so I thought that’s when I would finally become a wise person. Well, I’m 61, and I’m still not there. That’s because wisdom really doesn’t have that much to do with age.
Over the past couple of weeks we’ve looked at The Priority of Wisdom, and The Pathway to Wisdom. God makes a big deal about the importance of wisdom. It is a grace gift from God, but like all things that matter, it takes effort and discipline and work to develop and grow it.
“Is it worth it?” you ask.
“Why, yes it is,” I answer, “because it comes with…a PRIZE!”
I used to buy Cracker Jacks caramel corn as a kid. Why? There was a prize inside! I used to beg my parents to buy cereal I didn’t like, just so I could get the Decoder Ring prize in the box. I will occasionally still buy a Happy Meal, just to get the prize.
“I don’t like prizes,” said NO ONE EVER! We all love a prize.
Here’s the good news – wisdom is worth the effort, because it comes with a prize!
Look at Proverbs 8:14-18. In this passage of Scripture, “Wisdom” is speaking to us:
“You will find true success when you find me, for I have insight into
wise plans that are designed just for you. I hold in my hands living-
understanding, courage, and strength. I empower kings to reign and
rulers to make laws that are just… Unending wealth and honor come
to those who discover where I dwell. The riches of righteousness and
a long, satisfying life will be given to them”. (The Passion Translation)
TRUE success. That’s the prize that comes with wisdom. All too often we give ourselves to the pursuit of success, but we have a faulty idea of what success truly looks like. Take a moment to think about some of those “false successes,” and the people you know who have pursued them. Remember that old saying – “I spent my life climbing the ladder of success, but when I reached the top, I realized it was leaning against the wrong wall.” That would be a tragic realization.
Wisdom guards against that by pointing us towards things that ultimately matter. It doesn’t just offer us a prize – it IS the prize. Read Proverbs 8 again. Wisdom offers:
--Insight into wise plans designed just for you! (See Jeremiah 29:11)
--Understanding and insight for living well.
--Courage to make the right choices.
--Strength to continue when life gets hard.
--The ability to lead well.
--A heightened sense of justice.
--Unending wealth, because it guides me in how I use my resources.
--Enables me to live a righteous life.
--Leads to a long, satisfying life.
Over and over and over Scripture tells us that wisdom is more valuable than silver and gold. Seek it. Pursue it, and you will get to live the life God has designed especially for you!
This Week’s Memory Verse…
“You will find true success when you find me, for I have insight
into wise plans that are designed just for you. I hold in my hands living-
understanding, courage, and strength.”