My Mother, who becomes more saintly in my memory each day, taught me at a young age to read one chapter a day of the book of Proverbs. Since there are 31 chapters, for some of the shorter months I had to read a bit more. February was a killer. And I was to memorize one verse a day also.
Recently, a couple of people (two to be precise, one of whom was Donna), remarked that they thought I was a wise man.
I was one small part blessed, and one large part embarrassed. Who me? Just because I have grey hair? Wisdom is acquired by asking for it (did I actually ask?) and to have it isn’t just part of life experience and the aging process. To have wisdom, you’ve got to go looking for it, and a lot of that is about hanging with the right kind of people.
Back when I was staggering around looking (not very hard), for my purpose in life, I more or less survived some rude and unkind slurs hurled my way. I remember that I was, at various times and on sundry occasions, wise-crackingly dubbed a wise-guy, a wisenheimer, a wiseacre and even worse—a wise- - -.
(Dear Reader, please try not to be offended. This last ‘dashed-tag’ word is an anatomical reference to one of our “unpresentable parts” that the Apostle Paul delicately wrote about in 1 Corinthians 12:24 [The Message]. This ‘part,’ and others connected to it, are what Paul was alluding to when he asked, “wouldn’t you prefer good digestion to full-bodied hair?)
But we digress.
Way, way back during my undistinguished, two-year sojourn in the halls of learning (it was a university), I had all four of my wisdom teeth pulled at one go; and though that may not have made me a fool, I certainly lost any desire to stagger on through formal education. So I dropped out and became an Air Force jet pilot. Go figure.
After courting Donna (which you must admit was wisdom, though the courtship dragged on for seven years, and was not entirely conducted wisely on my part), she agreed to marry me. My second wisest choice in life. And yes, we’ve lived happily ever after.
But seriously, what is wisdom? How does one acquire it to begin with—and then continue to walk in it? [Read Job 28:12-28]
Nobody wants to be a fool—we all want to be wise; some people claim to be wise—in their own eyes. [Prov 26:12] There is more hope for a fool than for them. And yet few of us achieve a PhD in wisdom.
(There are many worldly-wise people such as rocket scientists, brain surgeons, professors and presidents. For the most part they gained their status through ambition and educational institutions and often just plain hard work. Then we have another category of men and women who want us think of them as wise, people like cable network news analysts, politicians and others of their ilk who inflict themselves upon us for questionable motives . . . but we won’t go there because we're discussing wisdom.)
King David was a man of war. But Solomon, as he became king, asked the Lord for wisdom and discernment above all else. God honored that request and granted it . . . adding riches and much more.
Some basic ingredients of wisdom are simple and straightforward:
- A healthy respect and fear of the Lord. [Prov 9:10]
- A hatred for evil. [Prov 8:13]
King Solomon, in ruling and in dispensing God’s wisdom, sadly ended up foolish by embracing evil: he gathered a huge harem of wives, he made alliances with wicked nations and he worshipped idols. (Read all about it in 1 Kings 10 & 11)
There’s a lesson for us there: by allowing pride in the wisdom that God gives us (and that we asked for), we would also end up a fool. And who wants that?
Much success in your search for Wisdom,
The only time submission counts is when you do not agree
(with your leader).
The only time humility reaches it's peak, is when it goes unobserved (except by God)
Now that's a strong statement. Remember, we're all ministers!
Recently in a ten-day span, Loren Cunningham took his vision—that everyone on earth will have the Scriptures available in their mother tongue by the year 2033—to five of the Christian world’s most influential leaders. Loren was so well received he was able to take selfies with some of them!
This month I sense the Lord wants me to remind you of this scripture from Romans 8:14-17 . . .
For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.
If you are born again of the Spirit [John 3:5-8], your spirit testifies with the Spirit of God that lives within you, that you are truly one of His sons or daughters. You CAN continually be led by the Spirit of God who is living within you, as long as you just quieten yourself and listen to Him, including Him in all that you do.
Think about this; you are a son or daughter of the King of Kings. You have nothing to fear! Nothing, if you continue abiding in His will and in His love. Relying on His love takes away fear. [1John 4:16-19] We are His heirs, His princes and princesses, coheirs with Jesus Christ if we are willing to die, so He may live through us and reveal His glory.
Many years ago, while I was teaching at a DTS in Fiji, someone came to me concerned about their finances. The Lord clearly spoke through me by His Spirit and according to the Word, “I am your Father, the King of Kings, your best friend, the creator of the universe and your employer. I have the best insurance and retirement plans, if you will only trust Me and seek first My Kingdom and my righteousness.”
My friends, the truth will set us free. We have nothing to fear. Yes, on this earth, fear, violence, and all sorts of evil will increase, but so will God’s Kingdom.
These are truly amazing days we’re living in! Just remember you are a son or daughter of our heavenly Father and nothing is impossible with Him.
Love and Blessings,
May 24-30 **Rostrevor, Northern Ireland with Val Clark
July 5-11 Restenäs, Sweden with Edwin Fillies
July 12-18 Sighisoira, Romania with Edwin Fillies
July 20-25 Skjærgårdsheimen, Norway
Aug 2-8 Champagne, France with Paul & Genevieve Marsh
Aug 16-22 Châtel, Switzerland (minimum age 18)
For details on all camps, go to http://www.intouchcamps.com
We hear statements like, "The safest place in the world is to be in the center of God's will." Bullseye!
Or, “You can know the perfect will of God for you.” (Does that mean that God has an imperfect will for you? Some people call this "the permisive will of God".)
And then, can you be not quite in the center of His will? Maybe even missing the whole target just a little bit?
Some of us perhaps live in His ‘Hope-will,’ or His ‘Maybe-will.’
I think we all agree that the safest place in the world is to be in God's perfect will. [Romans 12:2] But how to know it?
Simple really. Keep your conscience clear [1 Tim 3:9], and plan frequent and daily ‘check-ins’ with the Holy Spirit. These will keep you on target.
Till next time,
The Small Print
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