February 11, 2019

365 Days of the Great Names of God, Day 73: Spirit of Wisdom

Spirit of Wisdom

"The Spirit of the LORD will rest on him—the Spirit of wisdom and of understanding, the Spirit of counsel and of power, the Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD." (Isaiah 11:2 NIV)

Wisdom is a recurring theme throughout all of God's Word, and several books of the Bible are specifically referred to as "wisdom literature." (The exact number of books in this collection varies from three to seven, depending on the source you're consulting, but Proverbs, Job, and Ecclesiastes seem to make the cut with every source, and Psalms and Song of Songs are often included on the list, too.)

Getting a handle on wisdom, though, can be tricky...which should come as no surprise given that settling on a definition of wisdom in the first place is a rather slippery task.

I've always looked at wisdom in tandem with knowledge. To my simple way of thinking, knowledge is information and wisdom is application. Knowledge is what you know, and wisdom is what you do with what you know. Knowledge is having facts in your mind; wisdom is having the discernment to know when and how to apply those facts with your mouth, hands, and feet. Or, from another angle, knowledge is knowing what to say, and wisdom is knowing whether or not to say it. (See, in particular, conversations with spouses and teenagers.)

Of this we can be certain, though: "By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its rooms are filled with rare and beautiful treasures" (Proverbs 24:3,4 NIV).

I love to think about the kinds of "rare and beautiful treasures" a house built by wisdom would be filled with: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, for starters. It is no coincidence that these are the fruit of the Spirit, and they are beautiful indeed. I only pray that in your home and in mine, these treasures might not be too rare...that rather than being occasional guests in our spiritual houses, love and its companions might be regular inhabitants who move in and take up residence and never leave.

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I'd love to hear from you! Feel free to tell me what you really think. Years ago, I explained to my then-two-year-old that my appointment with a counselor was "sort of like going to a doctor who will help me be a better mommy." Without blinking, she replied, "You'd better go every day." All of which is just to say I've spent some time in the school of brutal honesty!