Lesson 10 -- third quarter 2002
August 4, 2002
© Copyright 2002, Christian Light Publications
A heart for wisdom
In reading these verses I realized again that my heart needs a stronger bent toward wisdom. The pursuit of wisdom does not dominate my thinking, drive my doing, nor consume my life. Bible reading, meditation, and study occupy an extremely small portion of my day. Reading challenging, thought-provoking books and thinking about their message do not find a ready place in my day's activities. Probing the life experiences and lessons in others . . . well, that rarely happens.
Proverbs 4:7 says, "Wisdom is the principal thing." In my head and heart I know this to be true. So that's a good step. But I want more than mere knowledge and intellectual assent to the truth! I want to live in such a way that I prove I believe it. I want to live in joyful obedience to the last part of that verse: "Therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding."
What wisdom offers is better, far better, than whatever silver and gold may offer. Not matter how much stuff they may bring into our lives, no matter what kind of stuff they may surround us with, gold and silver cannot match the quality and longevity of wisdom's blessings and rewards. "For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold" (Proverbs 3:14).
We value many and varied material things. Many of these things we have; many we wish to have; some we strive diligently to acquire. We might not stow away rubies and other precious stones, but antiques, collectibles, and heirlooms just might find their way into our "treasure chests" a little more readily, eh? Let's not forget that Proverbs 3:15 clearly affirms that wisdom "is more precious than rubies." (Other precious stones along with antiques, collectibles, and heirlooms rank no better against wisdom!) And in case you think you're off the hook since that kind of stuff isn't appealing to you, don't overlook the ending of the verse: "and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her." There we have it, friends -- wisdom is tops, exceeded in value by no material thing.
How is your heart toward wisdom? If it isn't inclined much toward her, yield your heart again to the Lord, asking Him to help you value and pursue wisdom more. Ask Him to deepen your relationship with Him...because "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding" (Proverbs 9:10).
The fruits of wisdom
Wisdom is no fruitless tree. She is not some barren berry bush, producing only runners, leaves, and prickly stickers. She is not to be likened to a beautiful, leafy potato plant that yields only two or three mini spuds. No! "She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her" (Proverbs 3:18).
This wonderful tree produces quite a few precious fruits; this lesson points out some of them. Through wisdom we attain to a full, worthwhile, productive life ("length of days is in her right hand"). Because of wisdom we can enjoy and pass around peace ("all her paths are peace"). Wisdom blesses us with endurance and security ("she shall preserve thee . . . and she shall keep thee"). And wisdom will beautify our thoughts and our lives with grace and graciousness ("She shall give to thine head an ornament of grace"). What else?
"Happy is the man that findeth wisdom" (Proverbs 3:13).
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