Summary: The reason for this is that God is more interested in developing wisdom through your character than making sure life is comfortable for you. God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy. We can be reasonably happy
OPENER: Who Want’s To Be A Millionaire Trivia Game
(available on powerpoint by request)
Fitting into Your World:
Congratulations on your physical prowess in dealing with everyday obstacles. For instance—
You probably navigated stairs expertly by shortening their strides and lowering their feet—and not even holding onto the handrails!
They respected the rigidity of walls and only attempted to enter rooms by the portals we call doors.
You recognized—smartly—that it was best to take a shower with hot water and brush their teeth with cold water.
For those of you that drive, you drove on the right side of the road at the posted speed—courteously honoring all signs and traffic signals—so they arrived in one piece.
Congratulations on your amazing discernment in use of paper.
Today no one tried to buy lunch with a Post-it note.
No one loaded Kleenex into a laser printer.
People didn’t blow their noses into a dollar bill.
No one dried their hands with a newspaper.
You demonstrated tremendous skill today at fitting into your physical world.
But how did you do in your moral world?
Your relational world?
Your spiritual world?
The ability to work with the deeper principles of life—to fit into the moral, relational, and spiritual world as God has made it—is what the Bible calls wisdom. A few of the most famous verses in the entire Bible explain to us what wisdom is.
Illustration: What Is Wisdom?
An angel appears at a teachers meeting and tells the teacher that in return for his unselfish and outstanding behavior in teaching the students to the best of his ability, the Lord will reward him with his choice of infinite wealth, wisdom or beauty. Without hesitating, the dean selects infinite wisdom.
"Done!" says the angel, and disappears in a cloud of smoke and a bolt of lightning.
Now, all heads turn toward the teacher, who sits surrounded by a faint halo of light. After a few seconds, a teacher sitting next to him whispers, "Say something wise."
The teacher looks at him and says, "I should have taken the money."
1. Wisdom is relying on God’s strength.
Scripture reread Proverbs 3:5 (“Trust in the Lord with all your heart.”)
When you trust in someone, you don’t just share a few secrets or loan them your favorite CD. You rely on them! Completely. At least that’s what the Bible means by trust.
Illustration: Boating on the Chesapeake Bay
One family was filled with skilled boaters and water-skiers.
They often skied not on nice, glassy lakes but on the huge, choppy Chesapeake Bay.
To one preschool nephew, however, the experience was absolutely horrifying.
It seemed to him that everyone would be thrown overboard and lost in the abyss as the boat blasted through rough seas, rolled over swells, and drove alongside massive ships.
The little toddler did the one sane and wise thing he could think to do—he laid down flat on the floor of the boat and cried for shore!
Eventually he calmed down enough to talk with relatives, play with toys, eat his snacks—but all from the floor of the boat.
To him it was the only safe spot on the water.
Many times we think wisdom is found through reading the bible---and knowing as many scriptures as you can cram in your brain cavity—or being bible smart like in the game we played earlier.
Or often we look at other Christians to see how they are living and see what they do in their relationship with Christ.
Often we end up like the toddler crying that they just don’t feel good doing what others are doing and feel like they have failed.
Wisdom is seeking what strength in your life God chooses to relate to you best—and customized to your life with Him.
You can’t have wisdom and not do anything with it.
If you learn all about love—then you need to start loving, if you learn all about forgiveness---then you need to start forgiving.
You’re not rewarded for wisdom just because you know it, but because you use it.
(Insert here a time of when you trusted God with all your heart and He opened a door for you to reward you for your faith)
2. Wisdom is rejecting your own wisdom—even when you think you’re right.
Scripture reread Proverbs 3:5-6 (“Lean not on your own understanding.”)
Show students an ordinary gumball, explaining that there’s an art to fitting into the world—especially a world with gum.
We can chew gum, blow bubbles with it, even use it as a sticky adhesive if we’re desperate.
But unwise people make a mess of gum, like the little girl who stuck it in her hair.
At first she tried pulling it out. Then rubbing it out. When that didn’t work, she tried shampooing it out. But her best efforts only made matters worse.