THE GOOD LIFE: The Value of Wisdom, Part 7 in a series

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Message Recap | 08.31.2014

Speaker: Aaron Taylor, Lead Pastor

When I was about 10 years old, I sometimes did things that some might define as un-wise. The most memorable was the time I took my bike and tried to jump a gravel pile.  Bikes back in my day, the mid 1960s, consisted of spare parts from all kinds of bikes that we would collect on garbage day until we could build our own.  Building my own bike taught me a lot about how things worked and opened up a creative spirit in me to make it cooler than the others who built their bikes.

My bike was 20” in height with purple metal-flake paint. I had high-rise handle bars and a banana seat.  If I leaned back just right I could do a “Wheelie” all the way down the street.  But one day, doing wheelies, just wasn’t enough.  The city had decided to break up the concrete on a side street not far from home in order to replace it.  There were long stretches of the street that were dug out and there were multiple piles of heavy gravel (#57 limestone) filling where concrete used to be.  My thought was that I could build a ramp and if I was riding fast enough I could jump from one pile of gravel (the launch area) to another (the landing area).

My friends assembled, the 4 x 8 sheet of plywood that came from my dad’s garage was laid down and I began my approach.  I had a FAST bike because of the gears I had built in it.  I hit the ramp right in the center and left the top of the gravel pile on course to hit the landing zone. I was not wise.  I hit the gravel landing zone but about 2 feet short of the landing area.  I hit the side of the pile and was launched from my bike into the gravel pile.  I skinned up both of my legs and my right side and had the wind knocked out of my lungs.  My friends cheered.  I did not.  The bike was not damaged, but I certainly was.

My point is that foolishness comes sometimes in great supply, while wisdom is a little harder to find.  Since that day, I’ve made all kinds of mistakes due to foolishness.  Thankfully, the Bible is full of wisdom, both in Proverbs and in Ecclesiastes and I’ve learned so much.  From the beginning of the Book of Ecclesiastes, King Solomon doesn’t really come across as one with great wisdom. (Ecclesiastes Chapters 1-6)  But in Chapter 7, the teacher of timeless wisdom finally emerges speaking about the importance of character, the refining value of sorrow, and the power of our own mortality to focus our attention on what matters the most.

The Bible says, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” (Proverbs 9:10 NIV)  The fear of the Lord simply means that we revere and respect Him and His laws.  The foundational aspect of wisdom is not with a college degree, but rather with faith and respect for the God who created us.  In Proverbs 4:7, wisdom is defined this way, “Wisdom is the most important thing; so get wisdom. If it costs everything you have, get understanding.”  Many of us learn the hard way; real wisdom should not be confused with knowledge or our intelligence level.

If you want to learn more about the Value of Wisdom and how Biblical wisdom helps us understand the meaning of life and how life works, listen to our podcast at http://painesvilleag.com/good-life for the complete message.

Friend, there have been many scholars and wise men that the world calls “intellectuals”.  These individuals have been labeled as key thinkers of modern times.  Yet, according to Biblical standards, they emerge as fools.  Walking in wisdom is a choice we must make every day, in small choices and in large ones. And Godly wisdom can be received by asking God for it. (See James 1:5) This week, seek God in prayer and ask for His wisdom for the choices and decisions that you make.  Ask the Holy Spirit to prompt you when you need to seek Godly wisdom.  Do you need God’s wisdom today?  God is ready to pour it out in generous supply!

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