An Attitude of Wisdom: James 3:13-18.

May 15th, 2009

James 3:13-18.

 3:13.  Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom.
 3:14.  But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth.
 3:15.  This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic.
 3:16.  For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing will be there.
 3:17.  But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
 3:18.  Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

Attitude of Wisdom

Some things about following God, and living a right life are simple. God is good and he wants us to live a life where we also do good. Having certain behaviors that go against God are bad, sinful, and lead to a life of misery, and ultimately having to stand before God as our judge. That's simple to understand, but sometimes a good thing can cause a problem.

There are certain virtues to strive for, certain qualities to improve our standard of life. One of those is wisdom. We might do well to have knowledge, share it with others who are headed down a wrong path, but wisdom and knowledge is part of what sent Adam and Eve down a bad road.

How can wisdom be a bad thing? It becomes a bad thing when we are not careful to be tactful in how we dispense that wisdom.

It isn't enough to simply spout off our knowledge, but it needs to be humble in nature. The language used needs to be at a level so the one we try to reach can understand. If we are trying to shed light on a bad behavior, it may be one the person actually likes, and doesn't want to give up. Persuasive language, and tact, are called for help the other person understand the merits of switching to a good behavior, or why the results of the current behavior leads only to misery, more bad things, and generally away from God.

People are stubborn critters at times, it takes a healthy dose of tact, gentle words. When the message that is delivered doesn't end in a peaceful solution, start with the only attitude that you can change, your own. Be humble, be sincere, be gentle and have peace for the outcome. Even if disagreement still exists, it becomes a matter between that person and God in the final day. Until that day arrives, there is always hope.

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