Wednesday, December 05, 2012

The Protection of Wisdom

At ten-years-old, I lived on a Baptist Seminary in Mill Valley, CA while my dad attended school there and pastored a tiny church in nearby Sausalito. My best friend, Sharon, lived there, also, along with her parents and four sisters and one night she and three of those sisters sang, Where Have All The Flowers Gone at our church's talent show. You know, the song which decades later, was voted one of the top 20 political songs of all time.

Well. This was 1969, the height of the Vietnam war, and while nibbling the chocolate frosting from my piece of cake after the talent show, I watched two men become quite vocal with Sharon's mom, who began to raise her voice in defense of her daughters until my dad came around and calmed everybody down. With wide eyes, I supposed something about that song had upset the men, but I knew not what, for lots of girls stood on the school playground singing it and I even sang it happily, myself, on the mile-long walk home with seven, or so, other girls.

But I was just ten, after all, and only recently did I recall that night and then figured-out the reason for the fuss. One reason? A lack of wisdom on Sharon's mom part to allow her daughters to sing that song in 1969 at church, there being a time and place for everything. (You may disagree. That's ok.)

Of course, in a perfect world, it might not have mattered, but ever since the shooing of Adam and Eve from The Garden of Eden thing, this has never been a perfect world. 

But anyway, one of my extremely favorite Bible verses is:

"Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her, and she will watch over you. Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding."   ... Proverbs 4:6-7 

Probably I recall this verse every single day, especially when I watch myself doing something stupid. Or yes, when I see others being stupid, too. :)

One thing I'm learning? Whenever I catch myself complaining about anything bothersome, I ask for wisdom to fix it or accept it. To make it easier, better or to make it go away. Not only does this involve extra listening to God and the Bible, it often also means searching online for practical solutions (like about how to sleep better, feel better, act better) and then doing those solutions until I find what works. 

It's not enough to just be a (lazy) hearer or even a rabid researcher, but I need to be a doer, as well. Giving-up is not an option, either--the Bible tells me to seek until I find, not seek until it becomes uncomfortable.

Seeking solutions instead of lazily complaining (and/or apathetically getting ourselves into sad situations we could have avoided), yes, requires work (that dirty word--heh), patience and mega-humility. 

But oh, Wisdom is a far better friend than Stupidity. Wisdom has been known to help people live longer, freer, much more pleasant lives... and that's what I'm after.

Proverbs 12:18
Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. 

Proverbs 13:10
Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

Proverbs 14:1
The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down. 


Tom and I watched an extremely cool, suspenseful old-time movie yesterday at Netflix. It's called The House on Telegraph Hill. Perfect film for that grey, grey day outside our windows.



Anonymous said...

Tis a funny thing about life...sometimes it takes YEARS to see/understand all the undertones of music lyrics. Heh, just the other day I remarked to hubby that I had more understanding of certain words to a particular song we used to hear. All these years later...he laughed and said it was the same with him. But yes, the mom and those girls should not have been too surprized that some were not too keen on the song choice!! In church anyway...
Elizabeth now in VA

Robin in New Jersey said...

I remember singing that song at a school assembly when I was in 4th grade! I can still see myself sitting there that day. Weird the things we remember.