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Proverbs 365: Day Four

Welcome to Proverbs 365! This blogging project is my attempt to read one chapter of Proverbs daily and then share a piece of wisdom or lesson learned from within that daily chapter. Proverbs are God’s version of daily Best Practices: they help us through good times and bad. When life becomes stressful, Proverbs are there to help us make better choices. Feel free to join me in Proverbs 365–either on your blog or by leaving your daily Proverbs lesson in the comments below!

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Proverbs 4

7 The beginning of wisdom is this: Get wisdom.
Though it cost all you have, get understanding.

You know I like to save money, right?  You know I’m always on the hunt for a bargain.  But this is one area where you better not scrimp!  Don’t cheap out of this one and choose the least expensive option.  That purchase will leave you upset, when the “bargain” breaks before its time.

What does that mean?  It means that ‘cheap’ wisdom is easy to follow.  When you face a dilemma, a choice in life, and the wisdom that everyone tells you is right, the one that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy, that is easy to do–it doesn’t cost a lot.  It is cheap.  But if the wisdom calls on you to make a sacrifice, to make the hard choice that will cost you something–like pride–then that is expensive wisdom.

For example, a couple months ago I had someone that I have had a strained relationship with.  Both a long-term friendship and a professional relationship.  They had done some things to me and said some things about me that weren’t true, all behind my back.  They twisted things around to make me look bad in front of other people.  Yet I still had to maintain a long-term relationship with this person–there is no way around that.  They didn’t know I knew what they’d done.  I decided to forgive and move on, and leave justice up to God.  Justice came, yet I still hadn’t ever spoken to them about the hurt they had caused me.  One day, my pastor challenged me on this.  He encouraged me to speak to the person and let them know how their actions had hurt me to the core.  I didn’t want to, but I knew that even though I’d been trying to forgive, the hurt was still too great to let me see the person and forgive fully.  So I went and spoke with them.  I really, really didn’t want to.  I wanted to sweep it all under the rug and let bygones be bygones.  But I could feel that dark pain eating away at me, and well, darkness is like a cancer.  It only spreads if left untreated.

So I took the expensive choice.  I went and spoke to the person.  They weren’t happy.  They raged at me, called me and others a liar, denied the whole thing, until I produced emails and other evidence.  Honestly, they didn’t realize anyone would take the things they’d said and done the way I and others had.  (I was not misinterpreting–others had felt the same way and pointed it out to me.)  As I explained how it felt to me, you could see their face changing.  They were crestfallen that they’d hurt me like that.  They’d never had good examples before them–they just thought that was how everyone behaved in the same situations.  It was through stepping up and having one of the most uncomfortable conversations I’ve had in my entire life, that I was able to not only come to a place of healing between the two of us, but also within their own behaviors and actions.  They began to see that their reasoning and past actions were all wrong–towards a number of people.  Healing began in many relationships that day.

Don’t go cheap.  Go for the expensive stuff.  You’ll be glad you did!

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