Do You Want to Be Wise?

Jen’s Gem: Seek wisdom in all things.

When my mother held my son for the first time hours after his birth, she said “He looks like a wise old man.” Her observation in those early moments of his life were spot on. My son has a keen way of seeing into the heart of a matter as well as the heart of a person.

At the exact moment of his sister’s birth, he woke up and called for me. Somehow, he knew in the wee hours of the morning that something had happened. If I was ever grappling with a challenging situation, he’d see through my poor attempt to put on a brave face. My “I’m ok” response was almost always met with “No you’re not.”

Today as a young man, he can still spot a lack of authenticity a mile away. Like Santa, he sees if people are “naughty or nice.” This wisdom has informed some of his decisions as well as helped me to see things in a new light from time to time.

In the beginning of December, I decided to re-read the Book of Proverbs. There are thirty one of them and I have been reading one each day. Written by Solomon, the wisest man who ever lived, these pearls of wisdom are truly life’s user manual. They cover topics like parenting, finding the right spouse, as well as how to succeed in business, live a life of integrity, humility, and love.

We are days away from a new year. Many people will be setting goals they want to accomplish. As my children and I sat around our Christmas Eve table, we discussed what we wanted 2022 to look like. My goal was simple. I want to make better decisions. I want to be wiser.

Solomon knew the value of wisdom. When God asked him what he wanted, he did not ask for wealth, good looks, or any of the typical desires we’d likely spout out. He asked God to make him wise. God was so impressed by this, He granted his desire and here we are today still speaking the words he penned thousands of years ago.

Wisdom does not age. It never goes out of style. And let’s face it. Don’t we all need a bit more of this as we live in these challenging times? I know I do.

So how do you and I become wiser? One way is to read the words of Solomon. Study them and apply them to your everyday life. Another way is to read about the life of Jesus in the gospels. He is the perfect example of living a wise life. Lastly, spend time with wise people.

Note that I didn’t say smart people, but rather wise people. There’s a difference.

Intelligence is “the ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.” Wisdom is “having or showing experience, knowledge, and good judgment.”

There are a lot of smart people in the world, but very few who are truly wise. Perhaps this is why in ancient times, the elderly were consulted on decisions. In some cultures, they were revered. Why? They had wisdom. They had that innate sense of the right thing to do based upon their life experience.

As you ready yourself for the New Year, I want to encourage you to listen to the words of Solomon in Proverbs 4:5-7:

“Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of my mouth. Do not forsake her, and she will preserve you; Love her, and she will keep you. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding.” (NKJV)

Ponder these words as you approach your goal setting exercises or other big decisions. And of course, pray about each and every one of them so that you will know God’s will for your life. His will is in His Word. When you know His Word, you know God. When you know God, you know what wisdom truly is.

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Jennifer Covello, Copyright 2023