News & Views
Issue 126, August 9, 2009
From Homeschool Helpers
In association with Pass It On Ministries
By Dan L. White
Wisdom is knowing what you don't know and seeing what you can't see.
We know that we shouldn’t kill or commit adultery. When people leave God, they even lose such basic wisdom as that. But wisdom is knowing more than that. Wisdom is knowing specifically what to do at a given time.
True wisdom comes only from God.
But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach; and it will be given to him.
(Jas 1:5 WEB)
Solomon asked for wisdom, and he really got it.
God gave Solomon wisdom and understanding exceeding much, and very great understanding, even as the sand that is on the seashore.
(1Ki 4:29 WEB)
Yet at the end of his life, Solomon disobeyed Yahweh by marrying disbelieving wives and he then became foolish. It is hard to believe that he who had been the wisest man in the world so filled the Mount of Olives with idols that it was called the Mount of Corruption.
We have the problem of knowing what is wisdom from God and what is foolishness from our own deceitful hearts. Repeatedly we have heard people declare that they did something because God led them to do it, and to us it didn't seem like God's wisdom at all, but human foolishness.
True wisdom often goes unnoticed. For example, when Governor Mark Sanford adulterized, his enormous lack of wisdom became widely known. When Dennis Meyer, a homeschool dad from Wisconsin, stayed true to his wife for decade after decade, that Godly wisdom is hardly noticed.
Wisdom is often the simplest way. God makes things simple. People make things complex and confusing. Wisdom is getting clarity. Yet clarity is a rarity.
In a very small example, I write with a laptop computer on my lap. The laptop is too hot to be comfortable. How do we solve that problem? Margie has a wooden pullout shelf on her desk, so I used that to put on my lap, with the hot computer sitting on that. That took care of the heat, but the shelf was too long to fit between arms of the chair and was tearing the chair. I kept telling myself that I needed to cut that big board off, but I hated to because it’s part of the desk. Finally the chair was getting rubbed so badly that I had to do something. So I thought ‘I will get a big piece of hard plastic to go on my lap,’ but I had nothing like that. Then I thought ‘I will get a wide board,’ like a cutting board.
Then I thought -- just use a cutting board, stupid. And I got a big cutting board from the kitchen, and it works great.
Such a simple thing – use a cutting board – yet it took me several weeks and several pulls on the cloth chair to get to that simple answer.
In a more important example --
World Net Daily Books just released a new book that we wrote, The Jubilee Principle: God's Plan for Economic Freedom, available at World Net Daily bookstore or on Amazon. We had to work with a media coach to prepare us for interviews about the book. When he asked us to succinctly state the book, we had trouble doing that. We wrote the book, it has a logical, sensible flow, but we had trouble crystallizing the book in one sentence. The coach assumed the book was about staying out of debt, and for a while we were caught up in that mode. We prepared descriptions about the book and the coach repeatedly said that they were no good, and made other suggestions. We didn't like his suggestions, because they weren't what the book was about either, of course, since he didn't know the book and was only reacting to what we said.
This dragged on for several weeks, eating up the coach's time and our enthusiasm. We could not cut through the fog. We could not reach clarity. Finally, independently but on the same day, Margie and I arrived at the same point. When God brought Israel into the Holy Land, He gave them a life plan, the Jubilee system. The truly amazing element of that system is how much time Yahweh wants to spend with His people. Almost nobody realizes that. Going through that Jubilee system in detail teaches you that enormous lesson.
The Jubilee principle is that God promises us enough so that we can spend enough time with Him. When we do that, we can have Jubilee -- release from servitude to self, to better serve God and others.
Yet it took us several weeks of uncomfortable searching to get that simple description, each arriving at the same place on the same day. We did not know what we did not know, and we could not see what we could not see. Finally we got clarity and the simple wisdom to see the obvious.
I repeatedly say that Christian homeschool families make the deliberate decision to spend less time keeping up with the Joneses and more time keeping up with Jesus. And that's what the Jubilee system is about – giving God His time.
Wisdom is knowing what you don't know and seeing what you can't see. What should I do with my life today, this week, this year, this life? The only clear answer to that -- real wisdom, clear and simple -- must come from God. And to get that, you must spend time with Him.