Proverbs 1:20-33. Solomon assumes something we’d probably rather not hear, and that is, we don’t listen. Wisdom, available to all, cries in the streets for attention, and so few take notice or take to heart what she/wisdom offers. “You ignored my advice and rejected the correction I offered.”
Ignoring advice is unwise but rejecting correction is a lot worse, because when we are corrected it is in relationship to specific behaviors and we know what we are rejecting. Ignoring is general laziness, rejecting on the other hand is specifically disdaining – it displays an arrogance that ignorance knows little of.
And the outcome is problematic because when wisdom is sought for, finally, she is not available. “When they cry for help, I will not answer. Though they anxiously search for me, they will not find me.” Asking God to deliver you when you have flouted his help on previous (consistently) occasions, or ignored his word, isn’t going to avert the disaster of bitter fruit. In fact we will live out the implications and eventualities of our complacency. “Fools are destroyed by their own complacency.”
To ignore the plain advice of God and expect him to work on your behalf is folly, somewhat like jumping off a building with no care for aerodynamics and expecting to fly. Crazy! – quite the point. God doesn’t relationally undo or ignore the precepts of his will/word for you or I. He will not deny his word, which is his person, to get us out of self-induced spin.
But it is never too late to call on wisdom for, “All who listen to me will live in peace, untroubled by fear of harm.”
Proverbs 2:1-11. Wisdom, like anything of value, takes effort to mine. Gold is rarely found waiting to be picked up by a curious by-passer. On the contrary it takes effort, sustained effort, expertise and patience to gather.
If wisdom were on the back of a bran flakes packet we would have little excuse, but it isn’t so this is why we think we have an excuse.
The terms in this passage of, “cry out,” “ask,” “search,” and “seek” are all indicative of a hunger, a desire.
So not only is wisdom not available to the careless, it also takes a desire to want it and the patience to find it. Although it seems obvious that it is written for us (Proverbs) it still requires a hunger to realize what we are reading is worth doing, or not doing as the case may be. Seeing something and understanding something are two different and sometimes incompatible matters. As we seek wisdom the sense of the Proverbs will ring true, the reason behind his sayings become obvious. Cursory reading will yield as much to us as if we had a toothpick and went prospecting for gold. Good luck to you!
Given time and application wisdom becomes a guard, a protection – “Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.”