Tags: wisdom

Origins and Outcomes

In our last post we talked together about how in the 9th century BC, the prophet Elisha counseled the king of Israel not to kill his prisoners of war. As a result, Joram (king of Israel) prepared a feast for the soldiers of Ben-Hadad (king of Aram/Syria) and sent them home. After that, we’re told, that […]

Reading in Low Light

The book of Ecclesiastes, like the books of Job and Psalms show how easily we confuse our own understanding with our thoughts of God. How else can we read “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.“Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless…” (Ecc 1:2 NLT), followed soon by, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every […]

Backstory

Words spoken or written have a backstory. So does everyone and everything. Without some understanding of what caused an event, or where a person has come from, it’s hard to make much sense of anything or anybody. That’s not to imply that anyone can collect all of the data, DNA, or background information that we […]

A Center— high and wide

Knowing when to settle for our agreements rather than trying to graciously forge through our disagreements requires the art and gift of wisdom. Beginning with our differences is a non-starter for getting anywhere together. But all too often finding agreement isn’t easy. Pope Francis’ visit to America, like Jesus’ arrival in Jerusalem, is a timely […]

Her Father’s Zoo

June Williams was only four when her father bought seven acres of land to build a “zoo without bars”. Growing up with exotic animals, one of her closest friends was Mary the chimpanzee. June tried to teach Mary to tie a knot but never succeeded. She inherited her father’s empathy for animals and recalls his […]

The Ways of the Cuckoo Bird

In a list of latest headlines this morning I found one that stood out from the rest, being different in kind— yet similar in nature. Appearing in the BBC Nature News, the headline is Cuckoos’ Shameless Egg-laying Tactics Revealed. Before reading the article, I thought of the cowbird that is known for laying its eggs […]

Hope in Regret

According to his mother, ML was a wonderful son who, at 14, turned to alcohol and drugs. In the years that followed, he made a series of troubled choices. Caught in a downward spiral, he eventually was arrested and convicted of armed robbery. To his parents’ relief, he got a suspended sentence and seemed to […]

Looking for Wisdom

From Eden until now, one of life’s great challenges has been to see our need not just for knowledge… but for wisdom. The difference is just as needed when it comes to our understanding of the Bible—and maybe more so in our information age. It doesn’t even take a knowledge of the Bible to see […]

Persecution Complex

In general usage the idea of a persecution complex refers to an unhealthy state of mind that causes persons or groups to assume that they are the victims of an evil conspiracy that has singled them out because they are different than the mainstream. The term therefore is apt to cause many of us to […]

Google Listens

The University of Chicago’s Wisdom Research website is presently featuring a news report about an 87 year old Zen Master who has been asked by Google execs to help  bring a sense of humanity back into their corporate work culture. According to an article in The Guardian, doors are opening for this elderly Buddhist monk […]

Solomon and Jesus

Long ago, a young king of Israel wrote, “Blessed are those who find wisdom, . . . she is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her” (Proverbs 3:13-15 NIV). The Wisdom of Solomon: To this day, we still tell the story of how God appeared to him in a dream and […]

Mixing it Up

Syncretism is an interesting subject. We see an example not only in Dr Livingstone’s Sechele, but also in the life of Solomon. 1Kings 3 indicates that Solomon, the young king of Israel, took a peace bride by marrying Pharaoh’s daughter. Born in the home of a warrior king, Solomon probably had his fill of killing […]

Toxic Truth

Who among us hasn’t seen the pain we can bring to ourselves and others by thoughtlessly saying the truth without humility, love, or wisdom. Those who accused Jesus of being a sinner, or worse (demon possessed) weren’t all wrong. They were followers of Moses. They had heard the rumors about Jesus’ birth, and were not […]

Bully

When my wife and I walked into the small, darkened auditorium, we saw something that has been almost as unforgettable as the documentary we had come to see. Scattered and spread out among the many empty seats, a few parents sat with children in a manner that, as I recall, looked more like a visit […]

The Gambler

How much of the world beyond has echoes, or reflections, in the world we know? While thinking about the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Philippians, I’ve been thinking again about The Gambler, the Don Schlitz song that Kenny Rogers made famous in 1978. While The Gambler isn’t Bible, the perspective it offers from the mouth […]

What Else is God Hiding?

In our last post we saw how a proverb can help us reflect on the wisdom and ways of our God. By giving us a saying that functions like a riddle, our minds are stretched to consider more than one possibility. Yesterday we thought together about the proverb “It is the glory of God to […]

The Bible and Truth

In all of our lives there are defining moments that come with the realization that our world will never be the same again. Some of these events changed the course of history. We may have been around long enough to remember where we were when we heard that John F. Kennedy had been shot. Others […]

What Is Biblical?

What makes something biblical? The easiest answer may be that, “If something is found in the Bible, it’s biblical.” But that means polygamy, slavery, and genocide all qualify. Another approach is to say that an idea or practice is biblical if it is consistent with the values and nature of the Bible. That’s probably a […]

Still Trying to See What Matters

It seems increasingly clear that wisdom involves the ability to see what matters in the middle of confusing and conflicting information. But what keeps unnerving me is the realization that when it comes to seeing what matters, it’s so often something that cannot be seen by our natural eyes and understanding. We talked about this […]

Endless Knowledge

Never before have so many people had access to so much information. With human knowledge doubling every few years and search engines like Google and Yahoo! at our fingertips, the potential for learning seems endless. The horizons of knowledge—According to Reuters News Service, the Hubble Space Telescope has found 10,000 galaxies in a window of […]

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