“Anyone who listens to me [wisdom] is happy, watching at my doors every day, waiting by the posts of my doorway. For the one who finds me finds life and obtains favor from the Lord, but the one who misses me harms himself; all who hate me love death” (Proverbs 8:34-36, HCSB).
My daughter stood in tears this evening, and my heart hurt. Once again, it was a battle of wills. Oh how I wanted to give in to her. How much I wanted to just grab her little arms and hug her close. But she wasn't listening. She was intentionally disobeying. And so, she stood in the corner, not for long mind you (she's only two), but for a minute or two, until she calmed down.
Disciplining a two-year-old is frustrating. They're still so young. It's often hard to determine what they understand and what they don't. But sometimes, it's very clear that my daughter is intentionally being bad. Like today.
I'm sure I'm not the first person to feel inadequate as a parent, as a spouse, and even as a friend. I find myself often fighting against my human nature. I'm fighting against words that tell me that I'll never succeed, that I'm failing in my relationships, and that I'll never catch up to a certain impossible standard.
If I was trying to live this life on my own, that inner, demeaning voice would be right.
But I'm not on my own.I don't have to handle life's moments on my own.
I have Jesus, and the wisdom He imparts to me day by day.
This wisdom comes with time, with trials, with lessons. It considers the mentors in my own life, people who have already walked the paths I'm now upon. It also involves prayer and time in scripture. Time contemplating the way God would want me to handle each and every situation.
Wisdom is hard work. It doesn't come easy. And boy, I sure have far to go. I don't think I'd really call myself all that "wise," as of yet.
Yet, I can look back on what I’ve learned. Already, I my heart has felt pain, death, separation. It’s felt feelings of growth, of change.
Each day makes us a little bit wiser. Each day teaches me that there is a choice. A choice to go my own, hard way or to depend on Jesus.
He is the ultimate source of wisdom.
He is the one who carries us through all of the ups and downs of this life.
The good news is, there's a promise. A promise for those who seek after wisdom. Proverbs 8 tells us that wisdom brings happiness and life (see verse above). As we look toward God, and learn, day by day, happiness will surely come upon our lives. Yes, there will still be many tough, growing moments, but we will also be blessed with a beautiful life. Because we chose to learn. We chose to cling to what was true and right. We chose to grow in HIS wisdom and understanding.
The other paths in life may be easier, but I chose wisdom.
What about you?