The Beatitudes, or Sermon on the Mount conclude with Jesus giving us four warnings. We spoke last week about the first two: 2 Gates: Choosing either the narrow gate or wide gate and 2 Prophets: Choosing either fales teachers or truth teachers.
Here are the last two warnings: 2 kinds of disciples and 2 foundations. Check it out and spend some time in self-evaluation.
How many people in your immediate circle of family and friends would you consider to be wise?
Wise= “having or showing experience, knowledge, and good judgement” Webster
You’ve probably heard the phrase, “Knowledge is knowing what to say; wisdom is knowing whether or not to say it.” And I would add, and knowing when to say it. If knowledge is power, then wisdom is using it the right way.
Wisdom, is considered by many, as the prominent virtue to be sought after and exercised.
“Wisdom is the supreme part of happiness.”
Wisdom is not innate however, it is acquired through experience. Wisdom acts in relationship to previous experiences and knowledge. Wisdom does not stand alone, it is intertwined with all of your life events and all you have learned.
Wisdom applies relevant knowledge with insight. Wisdom analyzes and reflects on experiences, files that info away and then recognizes the time it needs to be shared. Wisdom is on time and precise.
“Wisdom is the daughter of experience.”
Wisdom learns from past experiences and is not afraid to make mistakes. Mistakes make us better people, help us learn faster and more permanently. Therefore wisdom is willing to try new things and talk to new people, for in doing so opportunities to learn, analyze, and reflect are provided.
No one likes to mess up. Our brain doesn’t even allow us to move on until a mistake has been corrected, so wisely are we wired. But in those mistakes, as humbling as they are, data is being collected, spread sheets in our brain are being populated and we are being loaded with what will become insight and wisdom in our future encounters. Those mistakes are important and valuable for those seeking to move in increased wisdom. Wisdom learns from mistakes, risks, criticisms & errors.
Those who make the attempt to process adversity are able to gain meaning from it. Those who are able to adapt to events, situations & suggestions will find themselves being equipped with more wisdom, because wisdom is always seeking the broader picture, analyzing for applications and improvements.
Scientists tell us that wisdom rises until our mid 20’s, then stabilizes until age 75 when it declines. However, old age doesn’t affect wisdom’s decline, it is the motivation to pursue development that declines. (Psychology Today) So we could say that when we stop pursuing new experiences, ideas, or opportunities and stop taking risks, when we hold back for fear of failure, wisdom stops developing in us. That would be whether we are 75, 45 or 25.
When we, or anyone steps out to learn and analyze a new experience, then put that info to the test later, we become wiser. Becoming wiser is a noble goal and surrounding ourselves with wise friends also is a prudent goal.
I trust that through these thoughts you have reflected on your own wisdom first and then made note and given thanks for those in your life who are wise friends and family members.