Do you hear her?
“Does not wisdom call? Does not understanding raise her voice?” (Proverbs 8:1 NIV)
Perhaps it’s because I followed unwise whispers for my first twenty-seven years (and saw the devastation of those choices) that now, I can’t lean in far enough to hear wisdom’s voice.
God says if we lack wisdom we can ask for it, and He will give it generously and without fault. (James 1:5) He is our one true source of wisdom.
“He who walks with the wise grows wise.”
Even though Proverbs 13:20 isn’t directed toward our relationship with God, it certainly rings true just the same.
So earlier this year, I added the practice of reading one Psalm a day, in order, and the Proverb that corresponds with that particular day to my morning routine.
It’s funny how one tiny but intentional tweak can breathe new life into a quiet time!
I can’t explain it, but knowing what I will read before I open my Bible helps me to stay focused. Without a specific direction, my brain skips around like a little girl who just downed a second box of Skittles. It’s painful to admit how often I’ve allowed that one silly snafu to trip me up over the years.
But on April 8th, I read this Proverb:
“Listen to wisdom’s instruction and be wise. Do not ignore it. Blessed is the man [and woman] who:
- listens to me
- watching daily at my doors
- waiting at my doorway
… for whoever finds me, finds life and receives favor from the Lord.” Proverbs 8:33-35
I grabbed my needle-thin pen and carefully drew a line beneath the words listens, watching, and waiting.
I couldn’t look away.
Although I’ve read the book of Proverbs many times over for the past thirty years, it’s the first time I noticed the number of active verbs on the way to wisdom. So I began praying:
What’s one way I could be more attentive to the beauty and value discovered in wisdom? Before the question had time to escape my brain (as so many things do), the idea to keep a master list of what I learn about wisdom took a seat and made itself right at home in my heart.
So what’s one way to answer when wisdom calls? Create a Topical List Journal.
Within minutes, I plowed through my pile of empty journals. When I spotted the luggage cover, it reminded me that we’re all sojourners, not stayers, so it was the lucky winner.
Now, in the mornings when I move my way through the book of Proverbs, I read through a chapter in its entirety first. Then, I circle back to list what I learned about wisdom, like:
- She is a tree of life to those who embrace her. (3:17)
- Wisdom = straight paths. (4:11)
- Nothing we desire compares with wisdom. (8:11)
- Wisdom loves those who love her and those who seek her find her. (8:17)
- The LORD brought wisdom forth as the first of his works, before his deeds of old. (8:22)
I sit speechless as I consider the benefits of listening to wisdom’s voice (and the woes if not). Seeing these truths in a list-form format helps me to digest them easier and reflect on them longer.
But you and I, we know it’s not about making a list or finding the “right” journal. And it’s not about becoming wise in our own eyes (Proverbs 3:7) but rather, lifting words from living pages (Hebrews 4:12), and allowing truth to pierce our good ideas, our take on things, and what we think others want to hear.
“Look for wisdom like silver. Search for it like hidden treasure. If you do this, you will understand what it means to respect the LORD, and you will come to know God. The LORD is the source of wisdom; knowledge and understanding come from his mouth.” Proverbs 2:4-6 ERV
Do you hear her calling?
Writing down what we learn about wisdom is a good place to start, but maybe the Holy Spirit is tugging on your ear about a different word or theme. The subjects are endless because the Word speaks to every area of our lives.
- Is there one area in your life you’re struggling with right now? That may be your first subject.
- If you don’t have a journal handy, no problem! Office supply nerds like me seem to always have a stash hidden away, but right now, we’re blessed to just have toilet paper and paper towels, so write it down where ever you please — notebook paper, your phone,
dinner napkins(oops, those are also hard to find!).
- Taking an extra second or two to jot down the scripture reference will save time in the long run. Trust me.
- Read the verses aloud as you write them down, and then ask God to show you how to apply the truths. We’re after a heart change, not head knowledge.
- See this as a treasure hunt! Because it’s exactly that, regardless of the subject.
The wise ones search for what is theirs in Christ, and when they search, they find it. And when they find it, their ears open to hear and obey as one who just discovered the greatest treasures this side of heaven.
Are you ready to join the hunt? Share the subject that popped in your mind while reading this post and you’ll automatically be entered into the Topical List Journal giveaway! (Subscribers, you get an extra vote!)
Searching for ways to think of others during the quarantine? Click here to read “30 Meaningful Things to Do if You’re Self-Quarantined.
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