Greetings in Christ!
As we embark on this series of faith postures, we look first to wisdom. In Ephesians 5, Paul offers a few words about wisdom to the community: “So be careful to live your life wisely, not foolishly.” Deep stuff, huh?
Though Paul elucidates a bit about what he means here, he talks at length about cultures mores, about the social standards of community life. We might say that Paul talks about Ephesian street smarts. This suggests that wisdom is not necessarily a heavenly knowledge, but instead an earthly cognizance of how to live a faithful life in the world.
In other words, the wisdom we seek in faith is that attentiveness to how we ought to live life. It’s knowing and naming that our behaviors affect not only ourselves, but others around us, and that the decisions we make help to shape the world in which we live. Wisdom is something like self-awareness, or in today’s buzz words, mindfulness.
If this is such a simple concept, why then do we see so much foolishness in our day to day lives, from others and ourselves? Wisdom isn’t just knowing that our deeds have reactions, but choosing to act in wisdom as well. Most people know that we shouldn’t post verbal attacks and inappropriate images on social media, yet Twitter and Facebook remain full of brutal evidence of cyber bullying. Most people know that driving twenty MPH or more over the speed limit is a danger to life, and yet so many high speed accidents take life away.
Wisdom is not just about knowing the good, it is about doing the good. Perhaps Paul’s words, to live your life wisely and not foolishly, are more poignant that at first glance. We need that reminder, not just to be wise, but to live wisely.
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