Scripture can provide so many life lessons. Jesus has been healing people of diseases, plagues and spirits for some time now, and folks are flocking to him, but don't understand what he is teaching them. He points to John's ministry that preceded his own, and says, you missed what he was saying and doing too! So often in our lives we can get so busy that we miss that which is right in front of us. And that is where the grace and the gift of Wisdom enters the picture.
We are reading portions of the Book of Wisdom in the D/O right now. And we hear today: Therefore I pray, and understanding was given me; I called on God, and the spirit of wisdom came to me. I preferred her to scepters and thrones, and I account wealth as nothing in comparison with her. (As a side note, both the words "wisdom" and "spirit" are feminine in the original Hebrew, thus the "her" when referring to wisdom and spirit. This is one of the reasons why I say "she" instead of "he" in our Nicene Creed's 3rd paragraph when we refer to the Spirit's involvement in our lives....) Jesus says that the folks who went to John, and even those who are tagging along after him, are missing the point, not seeing that which is right in front of them. They are distracted by all those things that distract all of us from the message Jesus is bringing us. This happened to them, just as it readily happens to us, everyday.
This is one of the reasons why we pray, why we worship together as an intentional Christian community, to help remind us, as well as help us see, that which is truly important: and praying for wisdom from the Spirit to make right choices. Once again, Jesus is pointing us in the direction of re-ordering our lives and priorities based on those principles he has been teaching. This will always be a challenge, no matter who we are. The verse in Wisdom can help us remember a simple truth and assist us in this re-ordering: For no king has had a different beginning of existence; there is for all one entrance into life, and one way out.
Copyright 2011, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo, SW Waterfront, jfd+ 2010