God's Generous Gift- Wisdom!

Encouragement for Your Heart and Mind from Pastor David Staff

On most days, I read a portion of a daily, national newspaper.  My usual habit is to jump past the frontage articles so I can land in the final pages of Section A.  The thoughts of people brighter than I fill those columns.  I’m always trying to catch up.

In a recent edition, Barton Swaim offered an op-ed entitled “The Case for an American Revolution in Morals” (WSJ, August 19, 2022).  Both its title and opening lines caught my eye:

It’s hard to contemplate American public life in the 21st century (Swaim begins) and not arrive at the unhappy conclusion that we are led by idiots.  The political class has lately produced an impressive string of debacles…

He then lists a paragraph full of embarrassing decisions made and actions taken by a host of our governmental and civic leaders that defy any common sense.  His second paragraph opens by acknowledging what we all are feeling.

Readers may object to parts of this list, but few will deny feeling that the country’s government and major institutions are run by people who don’t know what they are doing.  A similar situation obtained seven centuries ago in Europe…

Swaim then cites a book by Harvard University historian James Hankins on a similar plight in Italy in the 1300’s.  My purpose here is not for us to sojourn into Dr. Hankins’ book.
My goal is simpler.  Given the chronic lack of truly wise thinking and acting on the part of our leaders, should we not think more about the critical need to handle important things – like our very lives – with God’s wisdom?
“All Scripture originates in and comes from the breath of God…” Paul writes to Timothy (2 Timothy 3:16-17).  “That’s what makes it profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in right living.  It can shape the man or woman of God, preparing them for every good thing God calls them to do.”

Listening to Scripture – indeed if we will regularly – reminds us that God has made wisdom abundantly available, and free!  The Holy Spirit moves James to write “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind” (James 1:5-6).

Twenty years ago, President George W. Bush admitted that he needed, as our country’s leader, to read his Bible and pray on a daily basis.  His humble candor brought him a measure of sarcastic ridicule from a scoffing intellectual elite.  What hubris it was to mock our national leader for this!
Our precious country needs women and men in leadership who admit such a need.  Who unashamedly look to God for true wisdom.  God is willing to give His wisdom to anyone who asks in expectant faith.

Indeed God’s invitation into wisdom is ever offered.  Notice the “if….then” of God’s offer. 
Proverbs 2 (ESV)
1 My son, if you receive my words
and treasure up my commandments with you,
making your ear attentive to wisdom
and inclining your heart to understanding;
yes, if you call out for insight
and raise your voice for understanding,
4 if you seek it like silver
and search for it as for hidden treasures,
5 then you will understand the fear of the Lord
and find the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom;
from his mouth come knowledge and understanding;
7 he stores up sound wisdom for the upright;
he is a shield to those who walk in integrity,
You are invited during the fall 2022 weekends to join the “receiving” and “treasuring” and “seeking for” God’s wisdom as we focus on The Book of the Proverbs each Sunday morning.  Our series – Wisdom: God’s Life Compass.

Our Free Church mission as a ministry is to help grow one another into the image of Christ through the community fellowship of the church.  Why even in this is Christ Jesus our model?  Scripture tells us that even as a young boy, our Lord Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, in favor with God and with men (cf. Luke 2:52).  Paul reminds us that in Christ are hidden all the treasures of God’s wisdom (cf. Colossians 2:3).  There is no higher goal than to handle life like Him.

So obtaining God’s gift will take hearts that are both receptive and eager to search.  A search God promises to reward.

Join us in the hunt beginning Sunday morning, September 11!
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