Wisdom is shouting to us everywhere and the amount of information available is growing so fast that knowledge that used to take 100 years to duplicate currently is doubling every 13 months. At the present pace because of the ‘Internet of Things’ increasing rapidly, it is predicted to decrease to a mind boggling every 12 hours. (“Knowledge is Increasing”) Despite all the advances of technology, is it really making people smarter?
At the risk of losing my followers, I will admit there are some things I just don’t get. I was having a shed built in my yard by a guy (we’ll call him Sam) whom I felt a bit sorry for as he was down on his luck having been through a divorce and bankruptcy recently. To me, having a close family and managing finances are top priorities and thus I spend a lot of time learning about these topics.
We spent several days working together and he seemed appreciative of some of the information I passed on to him to help with his personal life and finance crisis. I was thinking he was not the brightest bulb in the chandelier as he argued about basic obvious items with me the whole time. But I can’t build a birdhouse without bleeding, so I was happy to have him build the shed and teach me some much needed carpentry skills.
The leaves were piling up pretty high so I broke away and plugged in the leaf blower to clear the yard. Several times, I stretched too far causing the extension cord to be disconnected from the blower. After about the fifth time I let out a couple groans and was chastising Black & Decker for not coming up with a better design for this stupid tool.
Sam came walking over with a cigarette dangling from his mouth. Great I was murmuring to myself, I am paying you by the hour and you are walking around on another smoke break. Sam nonchalantly headed towards me without saying a word. He reached about 5 feet from me. I assumed he was coming by to shoot the breeze yet again. Instead, he stopped and bent over and grabbed the cord. He looped the cord through the little hooky thing under the handle (pictured above, lol), plugged it in, turned around, and headed back to the shed.
The best-designed tool is of little value if the handler does not know how to use all the features. And it does not help if the features are not pointed out in the manual (not that I read it, but I did look later just to see, the hooky thing was not displayed) All the data knowledge gathered is not going to make people any smarter, especially if we do not have someone kind enough to take a moment to show us how to use or where to get the knowledge.
Part of the goal of Average Joe’s Portico is to provide just that. Check out some of my favorite knowledge based web pages under the “Helpful Links” tab. Hopefully they help you as they have helped me. If you have favorites of your own, please email me or reply in the comments section with other listings and I’ll add them. I like helping people with tidbits of what I’ve learned, often the hard way, and love sharing what I do know, as people like Sam have helped me with the things I do not know. We all need a little guidance.
I believe we all struggle with some things, perhaps you would consider a deeper dive into knowing more.
Wisdom is easy to find, if you look in the right places. When it comes to financial advice people clamor for the words of Warren Buffet. For technology advances and creativity, they loved every word spoken by the late Steve Jobs. And here’s a list of the supposed smartest people alive today which many seek to hear what they have to say.
However, the wisest and richest man ever on the face of the earth was a man named Solomon. It is said he amassed in gold alone over 1,000 tons of gold which today would be worth $2trillion. He wrote over 3,000 proverbs and dabbled in just about everything one could dream about, including what he was not supposed to do with all the wisdom, power and riches (he had 700 wives).
Near the end of his life, he transcribed and shared the wisdom he gained from all his vast experiences. The primary reason he gained all that knowledge is it was revealed and taught to him by God. I believe all the additional knowledge that is coming upon us is not because people are getting smarter, it is because God is revealing more truths to each passing generation.
If you want to gain understanding, at least read the 31 books of Proverbs. Some people think the Bible is fairy tales, but even if you do not believe as I do that it brings its wisdom and is a manual or guide to understanding God, can I at least challenge you to go through Proverbs and see its wisdom as a start? Written about 2700 years ago, all of the wisdom packed in it is applicable today.
As simple as connecting the power cord to a leaf blower is to me now, so is some of the simple and solid wisdom of the Bible also. I will even take a little time from just one line of Solomon’s as to what is the smartest thing a person can possibly do with their time. It is so simple; its opposite is as dumb as me not knowing how to connect the extensions cord. I will pass it on in several versions of the same line to get you started and tell you so you will know how and will not have to say, why didn’t somebody tell me that? :
“The beginning of wisdom is: Acquire wisdom; And with all your acquiring, get understanding. (NASB version)
Wisdom is the most important thing; so get wisdom. If it costs everything you have, get understanding. (NCV version)
When I was a boy at my father’s knee, the pride and joy of my mother, He would sit me down and drill me: “Take this to heart. Do what I tell you—live! Sell everything and buy Wisdom! Forage for Understanding! Don’t forget one word! Don’t deviate an inch! Never walk away from Wisdom—she guards your life; love her—she keeps her eye on you. Above all and before all, do this: Get Wisdom! Write this at the top of your list: Get Understanding! Throw your arms around her—believe me, you won’t regret it; never let her go—she’ll make your life glorious. She’ll garland your life with grace, she’ll festoon your days with beauty.” MSG Version)
Wisdom is supreme—so acquire wisdom, and whatever you acquire, acquire understanding! (NET)
To start being wise you must first get wisdom. No matter what it costs, get understanding. (NIRV version)
The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. (NIV)
The beginning of wisdom is this: get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding. (NIV-UK)
Wisdom is the principal thing; Therefore get wisdom. And in all your getting, get understanding. (NKJV)
The beginning of wisdom is: Get wisdom! And with all you have gotten, get understanding. (NLV)
Getting wisdom is the wisest thing you can do! And whatever else you do, develop good judgment. (NLT)
Post Script Note – You have to tie in my previous posts to see the very first point, which is having a relationship with God. Although a lot of what Proverbs teaches is solid business, finance, and relationship knowledge, the main guide is towards Wisdom about God. If we seek God and seek wisdom we will find it, but only if we want it. Psalm 19:1 says, The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. May you seek, find, and know.
Email tab for private conversations are welcome as are debates in the comments section.