The Heart of Wisdom — Take 2

Oops. I guess sometimes scheduling blogs posts to go when you’re not finished with them yet doesn’t quite work out. Here we go again!

Take two:

My dear friends in St. Louis have an annual tradition of choosing a “word of the year.” This year they chose one for me. Guess what it was???

Wisdom.

So I began studying the word ‘wisdom’ in the scriptures.  One thing I decided to look up was where the word ‘wisdom’ and the word ‘heart’ appear together which led me to Psalm 90.

So turn with me to Psalm 90.  The subtitle for this psalm is “A prayer of Moses,  the man of God.”

Read along with me.

Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.

Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.

You return man to dust and say, “Return, O children of man!”

For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night.

These first four verses show us the everlasting, eternal nature of our God, in stark contrast of the temporary, temporal nature of human life here on earth. This is how this psalm begins – pondering the nature of God as compared with the nature of man.

The next seven verses continue this theme but emphasizing God’s righteous judgment and wrath on sinful humankind.

But then you come to verse 12. A special verse nestled in the middle of reflection on God’s eternality and our brevity.

“So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom. “

So, how do we get a heart of wisdom?

By numbering our days. By realizing how brief our lives are. Living them out in a daily appreciation for how short life is in light of the nature of God who is from everlasting to everlasting.

And then this beautiful psalm ends with

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.

Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us, and for as many years as we have seen evil.

Let your work be shown to your servants, and your glorious power to their children.

Let the favor of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands upon us; yes, establish the work of our hands!

In God’s perfect timing, I’ve been thinking about this blog post for several days but was never quite able to finish it. Yesterday, two significant events happened.

One, Bill’s 87-year-old grandfather ended up in the hospital again. The third time in a month. Heart problems.

Two, my pastor and his wife who had just announced Sunday that they were expecting their third baby, shared that their newest baby blessing had passed from this life into the presence of the everlasting God.

And there it is. The critical importance of numbering our days, from first to last. From the youngest little babe to the ripe old age.

image

Father, teach us to number our days. To live every moment as it might be our last. To thank You and be glad even as many days as we are afflicted, to rejoice and be glad all our days as we are satisfied with your steadfast love.

Amen

TWIG

Whoever is Wise…

photo by Emily Frazier
photo by Emily Frazier

Please, go open your Bible right now, or you can click here and read Psalm 107.

This beautiful Psalm begins like this:

“Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is GOOD, for His steadfast LOVE endures forever!”

and ends like this:

“Whoever is wise, let him attend to these things; let them consider the steadfast LOVE of the Lord.”

But, you see, in the midst, in the middle of God’s goodness and love, is lots of trial and pain and hardship.  Lots of darkness and shadows. Plenty of labor and distress. Even affliction and destruction.

Yet, in the midst, in the middle, there is also the steadfast LOVE of the Lord.  The Lord’s love does not waiver.  It does not end when His people rebel against His words and spurn His counsel.  His love causes Him to discipline His children, yet His love does not end.  His love is steadfast.  And the wise pays attention and remembers this.

Father, help me to be wise.  Fill me, Lord, with your wisdom.  Grow me in patience and help me to pay attention to what You are doing in my midst.

TWIG

The end is better than the beginning

“Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit. Be not quick in your spirit to become angry,
for anger lodges in the heart of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:8-9 (ESV)

For any of you who knew me well, you know that patience is not my strong suit.  It does not come naturally to me. I prefer a quick ending to a thing, to any thing. I like to be on time, and I like others to be on time, too.  I hate to be kept waiting. I like to hear “the point” of a story right from the start, so that I can enjoy a long, detailed tale.

But I’m learning that this is just not the Lord’s way. His way is long. His way requires patience and waiting. He rarely tells you how the story is gonna end right from the start.

And I’m learning that wanting things on my time line is, at its heart, pride. This pride leads me to prefer myself and my ways over His and this pride leads to anger.

And anger lodges in the heart of fools. It rests there.

But, I am no fool.

God has given me wisdom, by His Spirit and His Word, and I pray that wisdom would give me a heart filled with patience, not pride, not a quick spirit, not anger.

Blog progress!

Dear Sisters,

As I continue pressing on as a blogger, I’ve made some changes here at Teach What Is Good.

First off, I’ve found an improved email subscription service. I’d love it if you’d subscribe using this new service. Just enter your email address in the little box in the right sidebar and it’ll take you from there. After you’ve subscribed with the new service, you might have to UNsubscribe with the old one.

Secondly, I’ve turned on the comments feature. For a long time, about the only comments I got were spam, so they were just turned off. But now I’d love to create more community among all you readers by allowing you to add your thoughts here. Please remember Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

I’d also like to pursue having a new header and theme. Could anyone give me suggestions on this???

Love you guys!
TWIG