We've been spending a lot of time lately in our youth ministry focusing on wisdom and choices and decisions. Our church and our youth program have been going through some tough times, but the Sunday and Wednesday series aren't a response. In fact, they've both been on the schedule for months! (Yea, I decided a while back that I should plan further than 72 hours ahead; it's been a life-saving change.)
For two straight Wednesday nights, we talked about The Way of Wisdom: finding it and following it. Sometimes it's through the junk of life, the difficult times, the painful experiences that we realize how much we need God's wisdom. That's what James says in James 1:2-4; it's what Solomon realized as he was about to step into David's shoes and God promised to answer any prayer. We find that way of wisdom when we admit that we don't have all the answers on our own.
But it's not just enough to find that way; we have to follow it, too. Solomon spent much of his kingly tenure on track, but eventually he got sidetracked by stuff and wealth and women and power; he had found the way of wisdom but he chose to walk away from it. In James 3, we read that selfish ambition and bitter jealousy lead to disorder and all kinds of evil. That's the result of NOT following the way of wisdom.
The good news is that when we find the way of wisdom and then follow it, we open our lives to a "harvest of goodness," is the way the New Living phrases it, I believe. That's what I want in my life. That's what most of our students want, even if they don't quite know how to express that desire. Who wants destruction when goodness and blessing are available?