“Let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance.” Proverbs 1:5 NIV.
Interesting Proverb, isn’t it?
What makes a man or woman wise? Could it be IQ? Might conscience have anything to do with it? How about talent? Character? Personality? Genetics?
Solomon failed to consider any of these attributes in his writings. He wanted us to think about the actions and decisions God expects from us. As we study Proverbs, we learn a person who makes noble choices becomes a wise man.
In this verse, we also find an astute person listens. Now me? I spend a lot of time talking. Solomon wrote about that too. “Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent and discerning if he hold his tongue.” Proverbs 17:28 NIV.
I once kept a jar of M&M candies on my desk and called them my “Zip Lip Pills.” When I felt the need to offer my opinion—and too often this was the case—I’d grab a handful and chop down on them. Sometimes they worked and often the “Pills” didn’t. I found I was better off when they did and I refrained from speaking. Silence forced me to listen.
Sometimes keeping mute is best. When one is silent, he can hear and add knowledge about a situation.
The Proverb says a discerning person becomes judicious and perceptive.
Okay, that bring us to another word—guidance. From Solomon’s writings, we learn the king expected people to seek God’s truth regarding life. When we realize God wants us to absorb and apply His leadership to our beings, we become wise.
Oh my! All that sounds a bit much like a riddle.
And quite often, the ability to make correct choices at the appropriate time remains a mystery.
Come along with me. Let's see if we can figure out some of this wisdom stuff together.