A Meditation on the Legacy of Wisdom
“Teach us to number our days, that we may apply
our hearts to wisdom.” Psalm 90:12
Like all legacies, the legacy of wisdom is bequeathed by narrative. According to the Bible, there are ultimately two narratives of wisdom. One, and it came first, is traced to the wisdom of God that conceived of and gave birth to a world originally a place of peaceable, flourishing creational and human diversity (Ps. 104:24; Prov. 8:22-31).
The other, the Bible calls the wisdom of the world (1 Cor. 1-2). It is traced to the narrative of self-centered human wisdom (Gen. 3:6; James 3:14-18). Handed down to us from our original forebearers, it subjected creation to futility and decay (Rom. 8:20-21) and then spilled its own blood. Then, incredibly, it went as far as it is humanly possible to go. It spilled the blood of Jesus Christ, the agent of God’s wisdom.
Today we despair at the sight of our sophisticated, Olympian practice of worldly wisdom. Increasingly the brokenness and violence of its grossly distorted heroism bedims signs of the persistent narrative of God’s peaceable wisdom astir in our midst.
Yet look! There it is. Here it is. Over there, too. Christ active in the world with his gospel-shaped wisdom repairing human brokenness. The Savior alive among us with his redeeming, renewing, and restoring grace. And those participating in it – if only in some poor way and often against great odds – look closely at them. In them you will see narratives true to the legacy of God’s peaceable wisdom.
Prayer: O Lord, help us in our weakness. Strengthen me with grace to choose your peaceable wisdom for the decisions I will make today, that I may transmit a legacy to others that pleases you in the end.
©2014 by Charles Strohmer
Image by -Reji (permission via Creative Commons)