IT'S TIME TO BE LOST IN WISDOM, THROUGH OUR HEART AND NOT OUR HEAD
Before we start, let me emphasise something here, this book is not to be read in a tweed coat with a pipe in your mouth (as much as I love the Sherlock Holmes look!) This is not a letter or a historical narrative, this book is to be read in a colourful painting smock, surrounded by nature and expression! Sometimes when we think about gaining wisdom we can go into studious, serious mode, that’s where the tweed coat and pipe come in. But I don’t want you to read Proverbs like that, this book is to be experienced, and all of it’s creativity is to be breathed and inhaled not just endured and finished. So, as you read this book I want you to get lost in the characters, lost in it’s imagery, lost in it’s wisdom sayings. This is a book of life lessons, applied to every area of our being and daily walk. Experienced through the heart not through your head. You are going to love Wisdom personified and grasp every word that comes from her mouth. You are going to “boo and hiss” at Folly as she tries to lure you away from the right path. Proverbs is a book that is to be felt and applied not just simply read, assessed and analysed. This is Wisdom at her finest and it is a book that will guide and change your life, if you let it!
Today the word ‘wise’ is thrown around like a beach ball, randomly hitting people that it neither should be assigned to nor imposed upon. I hear people quoting ‘wisdom’ from movie stars, rock stars, politicians and Instagram celebrities and we lap it up like it is our only source of truth. When I started TYB I was so nervous, I started doing my Masters in Theology because I didn’t feel worthy to write on the Bible. I still get nervous every time I write a new blog post as I want to ensure that your wisdom doesn’t come from me but it comes from the source of all wisdom – The Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, His Word alone. As preachers and teachers, we are merely the laser pointer in the hand of God, the intermediary tool that God uses to point out His wisdom, His understanding, His power and for His glory.
So let’s venture into Proverbs. Have you ever wanted a ‘Fairy God-mother’ that gave you guidance for your life? I have, I love those movies where the hero is developing and preparing for their amazing future and they have someone who walks alongside of them, instructs them, and it is normally right at the pinnacle moment of their life. Have you ever wanted to learn from the wisest man in the world? Well in Proverbs you can. Today in our society we are crying out for people of wisdom to speak into our lives, tell us how we are supposed to act, how are we supposed to dress, what road to take, how can we be all we dream of. And we look in the weirdest places, we look to Instagram for wisdom, to celebrities, to people that we have neither met or know but we seek wisdom and guidance from them.
Imagine reading a brochure that said this
ONE NIGHT ONLY – come and hear the wisest man in the world. This man has written over three thousand Instagram posts on wisdom, written numerous best-selling books. The Kings of the world come to hear this man; he has been given wisdom greater than any man on the face of the earth. His wisdom and insight has been given from a power higher than humans, and at a breadth of understanding that is as measureless as the sand on the seashore. Wiser than any other man’s teachings and all free to you today.
Would you go – I would! Yet we have this incredible offer on hand and we don’t take it. Solomon is described in 1 Kings 4:29-34 exactly in these terms and he wrote Proverbs to share his wisdom with you. This is not just a ONE NIGHT ONLY offer you can sit at his feet every day and listen to his wisdom.
Today as you read Proverbs let the Bible hold the source of all wisdom for you. The Bible is Obi-Wan Kenobi on steroids, the Bible contains the wisdom of 10 Yoda’s (for those Star Wars fans), yet it is at times the last place we look for wisdom in our personal lives. Without the fear of the Lord there is no wisdom, we find out in Proverbs 1:7 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge. What does that mean? It means honouring and submitting to God is the gate to gaining wisdom. You can’t have wisdom without having that honour and awe of the Lord. Wow – I think in our society we relegate the Bible to teach us about morals, how we are to act in religious circumstances but our daily lives we keep completely separate. But Proverbs is all about how you are to act in your daily walk. This is everyday wisdom, and as you read Proverbs I pray that you fall in love with the Wisdom personified in this book. What does Wisdom personified mean? In the book of Proverbs Solomon portrays the two paths as two women calling for his attention. Wisdom and Folly are set as arch rivals of each other. One calling you to learn from her truth the other luring you into ways of deception and a path of death.
As you know by now, the TYB journey is at your own pace, you can spend a week or a month meditating on Proverbs. Proverbs is like a rich chocolate mousse, it is not to be devoured in one sitting. It is to be tasted in bite size pieces, so you can savour the taste and make it last forever. So with Proverbs don’t do what we always say here at TYB and read it in one sitting, no perhaps read one chapter a day for a whole month and study it’s imagery, it’s instruction (there are after all 31 chapters of them so it’s perfect!). If you are looking for a guide for your life this is it, but don’t just listen, do what it says. Meditate on its words and apply them to your life. Wisdom is experienced, absorbed! Absorb the wisdom of Proverbs today.
Fall in love with Wisdom as you read Chapters 1-9, she is strong, she is assertive, she is to be sought after, she stands at the highest point and calls. She was brought forth as the first of God’s works, we are blessed when we listen to her, she calls us to fear the Lord, to study his words, to gain knowledge of the Holy One, to keep them within our heart, for they are life and health to one’s whole body. Now Solomon didn’t do this to offend females (using them as both wise and foolish) nor to say that wisdom only comes from women. He is using these incredible characters as personifications, humanising them so we get to understand the traits of wisdom and foolishness better. Wisdom is the ‘Wisdom of God’ personified. That is why Proverbs is to experienced through your heart, it is a creative book of wise sayings, to be applied not just analysed.
My son, pay attention to what I say;
Turn your ear to my words.
Do not let them out of your sight,
Keep them within your heart;
For they are life to those who find them
And health to one’s whole body.
Above all else, guard your heart,
For everything you do flows from it.