Thursday, November 16, 2006

Do Not Be Wise in Your Own Eyes

We’re working with our little girl on humbly receiving instruction. On Monday, I had a little special “breakfast time” with her in my office, and we worked on memorizing Proverbs 3:7, which says:
“Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil.”
We came up with little hand motions to help us memorize it, and also wrote it on two sticky notes. I have one next to my office door, and she has one taped next to her bedroom door.

I trust that this verse will help my daughter receive the instruction of her daddy and mommy with more humility. But I already see the benefit of the Proverb’s wisdom for my own soul. I’ve been thinking about how it applies to me.

I am wise in my own eyes…

1. When I don’t pause to pray for God’s guidance on a decision.

2. When I fail to depend on God’s word and approach it as a daily “lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Ps. 119:105).

3. When I assume a decision doesn’t need a second opinion, and I don’t take the time to ask trusted friends for counsel.

4. When I am critical of another person’s practice or perspective without taking the time to understand it and ask questions.

5. When I am lax in fleeing temptation, assuming that I’m adult enough to “handle it.”

6. When I do something right and fail to acknowledge before God that it is only his grace that allowed me to do it right.

7. When I pat myself on the back about knowledge I have that I learned from someone else.

8. When I don’t draw out, or seek to understand, a person who is bringing criticism (whether or not it’s being brought constructively).

9. When I assume that the truth of a sermon is for someone else, not my own life.

10. When I neglect to consistently plead to God for his wisdom.

Until I see God and fear him, I cannot see myself rightly. When my view of him is clouded, when I’m a functional atheist, I will trust and applaud my own wisdom. But when I rightly fear God—when I see him for who he is as the all-seeing, all-powerful Holy One to whom I will answer—I will see myself as weak, dependent, and in need of heavenly wisdom. When I fear God, I will shun the evil of pride and self-sufficiency. By God’s grace I will grow in modeling this for my little girl.

Note: Please help me add to the list by posting more examples of “I am wise in my own eyes when…”

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