June 8, 2021 – Proverbs 8
“And so, my children, listen to me,
for all who follow my ways are joyful.
Listen to my instruction and be wise.
Don’t ignore it.
Joyful are those who listen to me,
watching for me daily at my gates,
waiting for me outside my home!
For whoever finds me finds life
and receives favor from the Lord.
I was a Boy Scout back in the day… And one of my favorite parts of being a Boy Scout was the Pinewood Derby! I never won, but I really enjoyed making the car with my dad, coming up with the paint scheme, deciding where to put the allowed weights, and then testing it out. For my first derby, we wanted to cut a racing fin on the back of the car. My dad handed me a butcher knife while he traced the cut onto the wood. He gave me this warning… “Don’t touch the blade, it is really sharp!”
The wise thing to do would have been to heed my father’s words. What did my brain think? “I wonder how sharp it actually is?” So, like a curious 10-year-old boy, I ran my finger down the blade. Here is what happened next… you know those cuts that are so clean that they just smile at you for a split second and then bleed like the dickens? Yup…
My dad quickly hopped into action, wrapped my finger in a bandage, and exclaimed, “What were you thinking?” That’s the point… I wasn’t thinking. I chose the foolish path instead of the wise one. We do that a lot as people, don’t we? Or maybe that is just me.
God is very clear in this passage that following the wise brings joy and life. It would stand to reason then that the opposite would also be true; not following wisdom can only bring harm. Our human nature is often to think we “know better” or to pursue instant gratification rather than to heed what we know in our heart is right counsel. Why do we do that? It isn’t a new concept either. Sin entered the world because of that very issue.
Here is the challenge… When faced with a tough decision this week, especially when we know what would be wise, while the other choice would be more fun, what will you choose?
Questions for reflection:
- Why do we tend to ignore what is wise and instead go with our gut?
- What does God promise to those who follow the wise counsel?