If I were to ask you what you want most out of your life and tell you that you had to give me one word to explain it all, I think I know what you would say. You would tell me that you’d want success. When we think of success, we think of joyful lives, filled with peace, wealth, honor, fulfilling relationships, and someone walking in their purpose. That picture can look different for different people, but what we don’t normally see when we think of success is what it takes for a person to be successful. What we don’t normally see or hear about is the wisdom of success.
Today, I want to talk to you about becoming successful and obtaining all of the desires that God has given you, from the biblical perspective of wisdom.
When I have read the word of God on the topic of wisdom, I have learned a few things. The voice of wisdom is one that speaks clearly and shows the road to take that honors God. The beginning of wisdom is the fear of God, but what exactly is wisdom?
What is wisdom?
Wisdom is defined as having or showing experience, knowledge, and good judgement.
While there is, from our general perspective, one definition of wisdom, we must recognize that there are two different types of wisdom. There is first, the wisdom that is from above or from God. Then, there is the earthly, unspiritual, and demonic wisdom. (James 3:13-17)
But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. ~James 3:17
The Biblical definition of wisdom, as explained in the Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary, states
“The man or woman, who fearing God, lives in accordance with what God expects and what is expected of him in a God-fearing society is viewed as an integrated person. He is “wise” in that his manner of life projects the fear of God and the blessing of God reset upon him.
The opposite of a wise person, according to the Bible is the fool or wicked person
who stubbornly refuses counsel and depends on his own understanding: “For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.” (Prov. 1:32; Deut 32:5-6; Pro 3:35) from Vines Complete Expository Dictionary
When you begin to understand that there is a difference between the wise and the foolish, you should also seek to understand what it means to be wise according to Biblical standards. The details of wisdom are found throughout the entire bible, but if there were one place for you to start, I would recommend that you go to the book of Proverbs.
A Few things the Bible says about wisdom
“If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an horrible life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom.” James 3:13
The book of Proverbs is a book of the Bible that helps us to understand the ways of a wise person. From here on out, I want you to remember that when I use the word wise, I am speaking of a person that is considered wise from a Biblical perspective. Anything other understanding of wisdom has to be thrown out the window, if you are going to understand the true wisdom of success. The purpose of the book of Proverbs is to
“teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair.” (Proverbs 1:2-3)
The Bible tells us that people who are wise should pay attention to the proverbs and become wiser. They should determine to understand the meanings of the proverbs by digging into what they mean and searching them out. (Proverbs 1:5-6) It also says that in many different ways that the person who desires to be wise or one who possesses wisdom does not passively sit around waiting for wisdom to come to them. They are diligently searching out wisdom. They are looking for knowledge. They are seeking to understand.
Can you see yourself in any of this? If you can’ that is awesome! I want to encourage you to continue to seek and search.
However, if you cannot see yourself in this, I want to encourage you to start to desire knowledge, wisdom, and understanding.
There are great benefits to being a person of wisdom and there is great success that comes with being wise.
Benefits of wisdom
Sometimes we need a little motivation to work hard. We may say that we want to do something, but it’s not until we clearly see some of the benefits that we will actually begin to work towards obtaining the thing. Wisdom is no different. I know that you may feel like it will take too much for you to obtain wisdom. God knew that as well. I believe this is one of the reasons why He outlined for us some of the benefits of being wise. I want to share them with you now.
Why would a person want to be wise? What are some of the benefits of wisdom? (In the statements below, wisdom will be referred to as “she.” This is how wisdom often appears in the Bible)
- Wisdom will preserve you (Proverbs 4:6)
- She will keep you (Proverbs 4:6)
- She will promote you (Proverbs 4:8)
- She will bring you honor (Proverbs 4:8)
- She will bring you grace (Proverbs 4:9)
- She will bring you glory (Proverbs 4:9)
- When taught the way of wisdom, you will not be hindered (Proverbs 4:12)
- Wisdom will be life to you, when found (Proverbs 4:22)
- Words of wisdom will be health to all your flesh/body (Proverbs 4:22)
I don’t know anyone who would decide that they did not want to be promoted, have glory and peace, health and life. Who would say that they didn’t want to be preserved, protected, or that they wanted to be hindered? Well according to the Bible, only the fool or the wicked.
So that just leaves one question, for now anyway.
How do you live wisely?
- Keep your heart with all diligence,
For out of it spring the issues of life.
- Put away from you a deceitful mouth,
And put perverse lips far from you.
- Let your eyes look straight ahead,
And your eyelids look right before you.
- Ponder the path of your feet,
And let all your ways be established.
- Do not turn to the right or the left;
Remove your foot from evil. (Proverbs 4:23-7)
These are just some of the ways to live wisely, but what I love about the Bible is that God has chosen to lay it out plainly.
He said in His word.
Getting wisdom is the wisest thing that you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgement. If you prize wisdom, she will make you great. Embrace her and she will honor you. ~Proverbs 4:7-8 NLT
Now it is up to you. Take each of these directions and begin to think about how you can apply them to your life in daily situations. Look at how you act and what you do. Begin to ask yourself if you are acting the way that a wise person would act or if you are acting like a fool. When you lack wisdom, ask God for it and He will freely give it to you without making you feel bad for asking. (James 1:5) He won’t call you stupid or dummy. He will simply give you what you are asking for because He loves you and wants you to reap the benefits of wisdom more than you want it for yourself.
I hope that you found this helpful and realize how you can have a successful life. There is a lot more that goes in to this, but it is a great start. By determining that you will be successful, you are saying that you will choose that pathway of wisdom. That my sister, is a good decision.
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I look forward to connecting with you soon. 🙂