“ So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. ” – Ephesians 5:15-16.
Are you wise? That’s really not a fair question because a truly wise person would probably say no, yet many of us would like to answer yes. We like that idea of being wise, but it would seem arrogant to claim that we are. It’s much easier to talk about someone else being wise.
So what makes a person wise? There have been people throughout history that people view as wise; Isaac Newton, Leonardo da Vinci, Galileo, Aristotle, Benjamin Franklin and Albert Einstein are some the people considered wise. Why would we call one person wise and not someone else?
Solomon is remembered as one of the wealthiest (2 Chronicles 1:14-17) and wisest men of all history. He wrote more than 3,000 proverbs and 1,005 songs, plus the Song of Solomon and the book of Ecclesiastes (1 Kings 4:29-34). Kings from every nation sent their ambassadors to listen to the wisdom of Solomon. But with all his magnificent wealth and possessions, he understood the value of wisdom: “For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies. Nothing you desire can compare with it.” (Proverbs 8:11). He also stated, “How much better to get wisdom than gold, and good judgment than silver!” (Proverbs 16:16)
Solomon also said: “Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble.” (Proverbs 13:20) Who we surround ourselves with has a direct impact on our desire and ability to pursue the kind of life Jesus wants us to live.The friends we run closely with influence the direction we go in. If we want to be wise, we have to surround ourselves with people who encourage us to make good decisions. Proverbs 13:20 tells us we acquire wisdom by walking with the wise. The person who lives in the company of the wise cannot help but to grow in wisdom because they will learn from the experiences and knowledge of their companions. When you spend your time with wise people, you will become wiser yourself.
The alternative to walking with the wise is surrounding oneself with fools, and Proverbs 13:20 warns us that those who do that will “get in trouble.” We are to avoid fools if we don’t want to become one. Fools put themselves in all manner of precarious situations. Which means that you too can be put in precarious situations.
The course of our lives is greatly determined by the many daily choices we make, and wise people can help us navigate those choices wisely.
- Read Proverbs 13:20: How has this proverb been demonstrated in your life?
- How do you manage the tension between “walking with the wise” and yet still have relationships with people who need to have Christ in their life?
- What can you do to ensure you have wise people in your life?