Spiritual Disciplines: The Holy Habit of Wisdom (@longingtobeholy)

I sometimes think perhaps I’m cheating a bit in some of these posts.  Because so many of my ‘Holy Habits’ series rely on the opening chapter or two of any given book of the Bible. Which makes me think that perhaps I’m not reading enough of the book before I settle to writing the blog. That sounds unwise, doesn’t it.  But then, I guess many books of the Bible do have themes running through them, so something mentioned in the opening chapter may crop up a few times before the closing words…
I’m also keenly aware that I wrote about guidance back in July of last year.  Not only is writing about ‘Wisdom’ likely to include overlap, it might also blow the obvious topic when we get as far as the book of Proverbs.  (There’s also the fact that there’s much less humour in this post…)  But with those things buzzing around in my mind, I’ve decided to plump for the Holy Habit of Wisdom nevertheless.

You see, Solomon was known for his wisdom.  Not just to the locals either.  Indeed, the Queen of Sheba’s rather flattering conclusion was:

‘The report I heard in my own country about your achievements and your wisdom is true. But I did not believe what they said until I came and saw with my own eyes. Indeed, not even half the greatness of your wisdom was told me; you have far exceeded the report I heard.’

And where does it come from?  Well, chapter one tells us of his request – he asks God for wisdom.  And he gets it.  And that’s partly what wisdom is.  It’s ‘seeking the Lord’.  It’s not a question of being ‘dead clever’, but of knowing who to go to for help!

And if the case for Wisdom wasn’t made strongly enough in the opening chapter, well, there are also plenty of verses devoted to demonstrating what happens when Wisdom is set aside, when people turn from the Lord.  The examples are stark indeed.  When people abandon God’s ways, things don’t go so well.  And the same can be true for us.  But it’s not simply a question of our reputation suffering, it’s a question of God’s reputation taking a hit too.

So what does this mean for the DigiDisciple?  It strikes me that Wisdom online will cover not just what you say, but how you say it.  The Bible talks about us being ambassadors, and I love this term (sadly, I haven’t managed to get people to call me ‘Ambassador’ yet, despite my generosity with the Ferrero Rocher).  The word ‘Ambassador’ reminds us that we are representatives.  When we write as Christians (whether or not we have a specifically Christian blog) we may be seen by others as representatives of God.  This requires a certain level of wisdom to be applied in what we say.

It might mean running some posts past others whose counsel you trust.  If you’re writing on a topic that might be sensitive, it could be worth getting someone to check that you’ve tackled the issue in a fair and wise way.

It might mean a certain approach to responding to comments.  Perhaps writing a response somewhere other than the comments box, to avoid the danger of posting a hasty and ill-considered reply to someone’s comment (however much we feel they may deserve it!).

It will mean ‘seeking the Lord’ as we blog, tweet and engage online.  That’s Wisdom.

About Nick Parish

Nick is a stay at home Dad who’s slowly learning that this fact doesn’t need to be justified by adding things like, ‘I’m writing a book’, and ‘I’m a Special Constable with Derbyshire Police’ (though both these facts are true…) He is heavily outnumbered by girls during term time, living in a boarding school in the Midlands. He grew up (ish) in Pakistan, returning to England at the age of 14. Though he’s happy to think of both places at home, he keeps reminding himself that he’ll never really be home this side of eternity. He is married to Anna, who runs the boarding house in which they live, and they have two boys, Joshua and Luke. He blogs at longingtobeholy.wordpress.com and Tweets @longingtobeholy