It Takes A Humble Mind To Understand The Value Of This Advice…
This is good advice for us at any time, especially when we are young. In fact, it takes a mind settled, humble, and confident to really understand the great value of this advice being given here.
It seems that, more often than not, we live today with a very confused sense of freedom. One of the examples of this is how we use and abuse our First Amendment right of Freedom of Speech. Listen to the rhetoric of modern politics, or of business, or of social debate and it seems that most of the speakers are convinced that they are the sole possessors of truth. At the same time it seems that most have lost a sense of the fact that all freedoms require mutual responsibilities. We have the right to speak, but we must do so responsibly. The right to speak also implies a duty to listen. This is what most seem to have forgotten today. Listening is hard enough, but to listen humbly is even harder. This requires a maturity of character, as well as of intellect. We certainly have a right to our opinions and to express them, but all opinions are not equal. Our opinions are only as valid as the amount of factual, real evidence we can bring to bear to support them. Even then, we must be humble enough to listen to the opinions of others. Why? Because we are, in fact, imperfect and finite beings, and we might be wrong. This ability to listen to advice, to accept instruction, or correction, is especially true for us in becoming wise in matters concerning God, our faith, and our duties as Christians.
Those who have humbly come to know that they do not know all there is to know about God, or about the good, or about what is true, are those who are willing to “listen” to the advice that can be found in Scripture, or in the instructions of those who are more experienced in matters of faith and morals, prayer and Christian service. They are moved by an inexpressibly deep desire to learn more about these things. They realize that others, by reason of experience, or age, have much to teach them. And they desire these wisdoms so that they may live more faithful, more prayerful, more godly lives in the future.
As Christians, we know our place before God. Without him we are lost. There is no other who is his equal in wisdom, or in mercy. We know ourselves as his children, and as children we know that we have much to learn. We know our need for his wisdom, that it is his wisdom that is the source of all that is good in our personal lives, as well as for the world. We know that we are only beginners, that we have much room to grow, both in our knowledge of God and in our faith. This is why we humbly seek knowledge of him daily in the scriptures. This is why we honor the sabbath. We know our need for his advice, his merciful counsel, and his forgiveness. We know, too, that there are those among us who, by experience, have grown wise in the faith and that God can use them to advise and instruct us on our journey.
Lord, inspire in us the willingness to listen humbly to the advice of those among us who, by your grace, have grown wise in the faith. Give us the courage to seek them out for their instruction when we are in need. Teach us to love your wisdom so that when others come to us for advice and instruction, we will offer it to them humbly, and in your name. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen!
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