Wisdom is all around us. It’s on our phones. Just ask Google. True wisdom starts with God. That is the premise of Proverbs. How is such wisdom gained? There are a number of ways.
The best (and easiest) is to learn from others (Proverbs 19:20). Proverbs is one of the wisdom storehouses in Scripture. One of the thing that puzzles and frustrates people when trying to read Proverbs straight through is that it seems to contradict itself. Often as we read Proverbs, we can find answers to riddles we didn’t know we had. Yet, too often we ignore this valuable book.
However, sadly, wisdom is often learned another way…the hard way. You could never apply that to anyone you know, right? Certainly not yourself? Let’s be honest with ourselves, often we learn through pain (Proverbs 19:25).
The Israelites were in pain. They were in trouble. Jeremiah’s vision is very interesting. There were a lot of good figs! Those good figs got stuck in a mess with the bad figs, that the bad figs started! Or did the bad figs really start it alone? Often, all it takes is a good person to allow the bad person to have their way, and all is lost. At least that is the human perspective. It is not God’s.
There is good at the end. God uses the trouble to clean up some of the bad fruit so that the people who return will be less inclined to turn their hearts away.
1) When has God used your mistakes to teach you? How have you tried to share those lessons with others?
2) Often wisdom comes from unusual or even uncomfortable sources. Can you think of a time recently when you dismissed the wisdom of others because they weren’t like you?
3) God’s redemptive plan is always at work. There is no time too late to turn to God on this side of the veil of death. Whose salvation are you praying for? If no one, then it’s time to add at least one to the list.