Wednesday, August 8, 2012

When You Need a Little Wisdom

It’s 2 am and I gradually realize I am awake. There was no sudden noise or bad dream. Just a gradual increasing of consciousness. I open my eyes but the room is still dark. I can barely make out the shape of my husband sleeping next to me, the dresser and chair. Thoughts of the past few days start flooding my mind, anxiety creeping into all the corners. Lord, I don’t want to stress about this now. Please take these thoughts from me so I can sleep. But sleep slips further out of my grasp as full consciousness takes over.

My mind hits the rewind button. My child who wants a decision from me. A decision that she “knows is from God because she feels it so strongly.” But she is young and immature in her faith. How do I explain it to her? Without discouraging her faith in God? Without crushing her spirit? That strong feelings don’t necessarily mean it’s from God. We experience a lot of strong feelings at times. Love, joy, peace, excitement, anticipation. And the other side of feelings…loneliness, sadness, anger, hatred, jealousy, and just…selfish desires. Things we really want. Maybe not bad, in themselves, but not good for us either.

Lord, I know what the answer is but she is not going to want to hear it. She is being driven by outside influences, inward needs and desires, and emotions. But I can’t make parenting decisions based on the shifting emotions of an adolescent girl. I have to make decisions based on facts, common sense and Godly wisdom. 

Father, help your daughter, this mother with Your wisdom. 

I will my tired body up out of bed, pull on my robe, and quietly tread into the den so as not to wake up my husband. I pull the Bible I’ve had since I was a young teenager off the shelf and slink into a chair.

I prayed that God would convict me about this decision, if I am just being stubborn.  

I open to a Psalm and read. It soothes me some. Father, I need Your wisdom. I turn to Proverbs.  Proverbs 1:1. As my mind takes in the words, certain verses jump out at me. I pull a legal pad off the desk and write them down. As I continue reading, more and more verses make their way to my notepad. Exortations to embrace wisdom. That if we seek for understanding and value it as silver, then we will understand the fear of the Lord and the knowledge of God. Wisdom bestows well-being. That we should guard our heart for everything we do flows from it. Give careful thought to the paths of our feet. How hatred stirs up conflict but love covers over all wrongs.

Good people obtain favor from the Lord,
    but he condemns those who devise wicked schemes. Prov. 12:2 (NIV)

Whoever spares the rod hates their children,
    but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them. Prov. 13:24 (NIV)

There is a way that appears to be right,
    but in the end it leads to death. Prov. 14:12 (NIV)

The simple believe anything,
    but the prudent give thought to their steps. Prov. 14:15 (NIV)

A gentle answer turns away wrath,
    but a harsh word stirs up anger. Prov. 15:1 (NIV)

Folly brings joy to one who has no sense,
    but whoever has understanding keeps a straight course. Prov. 15:21 (NIV)

To humans belong the plans of the heart,
    but from the Lord comes the proper answer of the tongue.

All a person’s ways seem pure to them,
    but motives are weighed by the Lord.
Commit to the Lord whatever you do,
    and he will establish your plans. Prov. 16:1-3 (NIV)

Gracious words are a honeycomb,
    sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.  Prov. 16:24 (NIV)

--- 5:30 am now and I put my pen down having read the entire book of Proverbs and filling seven pages of a lined yellow paper with verses.

I quietly crawl back in bed and quickly fall back asleep with a little more peace in my heart.

Grace and Peace,

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