Fear —> Wisdom
I am not a huge fan of heights… I’m comfortable in saying that I am actually quite scared of them. I’m pretty sure I’m right in making the huge generalisation that everyone has a fear. It can be something as simple as spiders, clowns and cats, or it could be something a little more heavy duty like finances, public speaking or even the thought of being alone. Strangely enough these fears can often cause us to make decisions. The way in which we make decisions when faced with fear will give us an idea on how wise we are. We all want to be wise in how we handle decision making, but what does it take to gain wisdom?
In the book of Proverbs the author says ‘the fear of God is where wisdom starts…’ But, what does ‘fear of God’ actually mean and why does it matter? How does fear lead to wisdom when the world tells us that courage leads to wisdom?
For me becoming wise begins with knowing God. To really know God is not just to know details about Him, but to respect Him and have a relationship with Him. The starting point of wisdom is found in fearing God, this doesn’t mean that we go around every day all day being afraid of the big guy in the sky. Fearing God means to love, honour and respect Him, to trust and to obey Him.
Wisdom comes by listening to God and doing what He says. As we strive to become wise, there are three ways we can use to gain wisdom:
- Read and Study Bible.
Proverbs 1 and 9 may be a good place to start because they tell us all about fearing God. I challenge you to find time in your day to take 10 minutes to read the Bible without being distracted (this is actually quite hard to do). There are heaps of stories in the Bible we read about that help give us wisdom on how we are to act and make future decisions.
- Ask questions.
There is not a question that God would be intimidated by. In fact God encourages us to ask questions in humility and welcomes them if we ask them in humility with a desire to know Him more. Don’t be afraid to ask Him why or even what to take away from what is happening.
- Be teachable.
We need to be mouldable and always be willing to learn from the decision, situation and/or conflict. We shouldn’t be overly sensitive when someone shares a concern that they have about us because it is an opportunity to gain wisdom on how to improve ourselves. Ask God for guidance in the life lessons He wants us to learn in the feedback we receive.
The choices we make and the consequences of those choices pave the direction in which our lives head. When we choose to chase after wisdom, our relationship with God deepens. Fearing God will create a respect for Him that develops a wisdom in us to help us through every decision we make.
-Simon Hutton, Chaplain