The Foundation of Wisdom
Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true wisdom. All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom. Praise him forever!
Wisdom seems to be on the wane these days. Our society tends to value that which is trendy, spectacular, and instantaneous. Thus we tend to neglect wisdom, which is classic, unpretentious, and unhurried. Moreover, we are entranced by the audacity of youth rather than the prudence of maturity.
Yet, how desperately we need wisdom! Our political leaders need wisdom as they seek to guide us in uncertain times. Our business leaders need wisdom if they’re to help our economy recover its vitality. Our religious leaders need wisdom to deal with the rapidly changing culture in which we live. And you and I need wisdom each day: in our work, in our families, in our learning, and in our effort to be servants of Jesus Christ. We need to know, not only how to do things, and not only all the things we might do, but also which of those things are right and will be fruitful.
Psalm 111:10 shows us how to become wise: “Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true wisdom.” This core truth, which appears elsewhere in Scripture (Prov. 9:10, for example), reminds us that wisdom is not something we gain on our own. Rather, true wisdom comes as a result of knowing, honoring, reverencing, submitting to, and obeying God. That’s what the “fear of the Lord” is all about.
So, if you desire to be a better boss, or a better employee, or a better parent, or a better teacher, or a better leader, or a better friend, if you want to be someone who knows what’s best to do in any given situation, then fear the Lord! Live your whole life in reverent respect of God, seeking his guidance and glory in all you do.
QUESTIONS FOR FURTHER REFLECTION: What comes to mind when you hear the phrase “the fear of the Lord”? How can you grow in godly fear? What helps you to honor and respect God? When have you been a recipient or a conduit of God’s wisdom?
PRAYER: O Lord, I do need wisdom, your wisdom. I need to see what you see, to discern as you discern, to value as you value. I need to know, not only all the possibilities, but which of them is best. I seek wisdom as a disciple, a father, a leader, a pastor, a writer, and a friend.
Lord, may I grow in godly fear, not that I would be afraid of you, but that I would be overwhelmed afresh by your awesome glory, power, and majesty. Help me not to take you for granted or to minimize your holiness. May I live each day for your purpose and pleasure.
As I offer myself humbly to you, entrusting all that I am to you, give me wisdom, dear Lord. Use me to guide your people and your work. Help me to live each day to the fullest, for your sake. Amen.