Wisdom is something that should be desirable in our lives, yet too often we see wisdom mocked. This can become disastrous. Why should we reach for wisdom? The various reasons include being able to understand wisdom better, to be an example, and to grow personally. Solomon gives us another reason in this verse of Proverbs.
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge,
but fools despise wisdom and discipline. (NIV)
Make it Personal:
I highly suggest that you keep a personal notebook as you try to grow personally. In it, you can write your opinions of what you read, your feelings, and goals you want to achieve. For this piece, list the benefits of wisdom in your life. How can wisdom help you? How can wisdom make your life better? How can it help you become a better person?
This should be the real reason we obtain wisdom. Because we should fear the Lord. Now, wait. Don’t get all worked up over this. The word fear is one of those I think that we should visit a little more and bring out Webster.
We all know that one of the meanings of fear is to be scared or frightened. This is the very first thing we think of when we hear this word. But this is one of the reasons the English language can be so hard to grasp. This word has another meaning that is not quite the same. Webster has one definition that we need to focus on: “profound reverence and awe especially toward God”. It is not fear. It is reverence.
In this verse Solomon is saying that we are to be extremely reverent (worshipful, honoring, respectful) of God. This means acknowledging His position, status, power, and place in your life. Knowing that He has the power to create the heavens and the earth without so much as a thought, that He can defeat ANY power out there, that He is the beginning and the end. Only when we can accept that in our lives can we truly begin the path to wisdom. It is the crucial first step.
The initial acceptance is not enough. We are called to learn more and more of His awesome power and to lean on Him more and ourselves less. Wisdom comes from that and that alone. I know I cannot do it alone. I need God to help me obtain wisdom to survive this world.
Now let’s get personal with all this. Do you fear the Lord? Do you worship Him? Do you give Him the respect He deserves and demands of us? If not, take some time now and think about His place in your life. He wants to be involved. Let Him in.
Make it Personal:
Answer these questions in your notebook. Be honest with yourself.
- What are you afraid of?
- How do you react when you are afraid?
- Who are you afraid of only in the sense of what they can do to you?
- How does fear apply to your relationship with God?
Why Do We Avoid Wisdom?
Wisdom requires us to humble ourselves. You could say that is a big reason why this world avoids wisdom. The average person does not want to humble themselves to any degree. I look at family, coworkers, acquaintances around me, and all I can see is people who argue to be right all the time. They cannot concede to anyone else.
To obtain wisdom, we have to admit that we might not always be right. We might not always be the best person for the job. We might need to grow a little. Most people I know seem to face life with the exact opposite personality. Watching social media, I think most people fit that bill.
We avoid wisdom because to get wisdom we have to lower ourselves. The average person does not want to do that. It has nothing to do with being a particular race or a from a specific country. This attitude transcends all that yet is imbedded in race, nationality, and even gender.
If we really want to avoid drama, riots, and splinters in groups, we have to reach for wisdom.