My unique father used to use the term “Wise Guy” in a derogatory manner when he referred to me. A conversation would go something like this:
Dad: “Are you wearing that to school again?”
Me: “Yes.” I’d say in my lofty teenage-girl-voice.
Dad: “So you’re wearing overalls so you can be different like all the rest of the kids?”
Me: “Whatever you say, Dad.”
Dad: “Don’t be a wise guy,” he’d say as I slinked out the back door for school dressed in my jean overalls for the fifth day in a row.
As I look back on it, I think he was the wise guy.
The older I get, the less I know, and the more I realize how much my parents knew. They were wise.
Something else my dad used to say was, “Sometimes, people get dumber by degrees. They might have a PhD, or an MBA, or an MSW, but they don’t necessarily have a J-O-B.
I used to think he was talking about the book in the Bible. I think I’d graduated from college and had a J-O-B before I understood he meant occupation.
I want to be wise. I wouldn’t mind being knowledgeable, but my desire is wisdom.
So when my pastor, David Brady decided to preach through the book of Proverbs, I got excited. I figured it would be something like Become Wise in Ten Easy Lessons.
He began with an unexpected question, “Do you fear God?”
From that thought-provoking question he took us to several references in the Bible, beginning with Proverbs 1:7,
“Fear of the LORD is the foundation of true knowledge.” (NLT)
True wisdom begins with fearing God. It’s like the foundation of the house. No foundation–no house.
We definitely don’t see much in the news or on TV about fearing God. If anything, they make fun of it. Most try to separate fear from God. My pastor said, “Separating fear from God is like taking the word butterfly and separating the syllables. In other words, flying butter.
I’ve never seen that.
Many people who say they believe the Bible say God is love and there’s no need to fear Him. Kind of like a big, heavenly, Santa Claus.
That’s not what the Bible says. His Word, both the New and Old Testament emphasize fearing and loving God.
When I honestly questioned myself, I knew I feared God. I know one day I’ll give an account of my life, but it seems so far off, and this world seems so real. Often, I fear man more than I fear God. But I don’t want to. I want to be a truly wise guy.
What about you? Do you fear God?
Come along with me as I blog through Proverbs and maybe we can share a cup of coffee together and become wise.
Although it might take more than ten easy lessons.
And the first lesson is fear God, not man.
Are you with me?