Tag Archives: insight

The Value of Wise Counsel

Wise counsel is a topic that stirs up a deep and vibrant passion within me. Because wisdom equips us to reject mediocrity while cultivating quality in our lives, I am convinced that Godly wisdom is the greatest indicator of how well one’s life will be lived.

Of course, this implies that one has already accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Jesus Christ invites us to accept a new life in Him, and the wisdom found in God’s word is what teaches us how to live out this new life.

Wisdom found in God’s word invites us into God’s way of thinking. 

Let’s see what the Word has to say about wisdom:

“The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for gaining wisdom and discipline (implying we must seek it in order to gain it); for understanding words of insight; for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair; for giving prudence to those who are simple, knowledge and discretion (good judgement) to the young—let the wise listen and add to their learning (implying humility is wisdom, since one who is wise continues to be teachable), and let the discerning get guidance —for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 1:1-7

I’m not sure about you, but I want everything that wisdom has to offer: the discipline to do what needs to be done to reach my goals, the ability to understand words of insight, and the discernment to know what is right and wrong in this whirlwind of chaos called life. And I want to avoid senseless mistakes.

How is wise counsel related to wisdom? Wisdom comes from the Lord. Counsel is advice given to one person by another. Therefore, wise counsel is the advice or insight given to another person that is based on God’s truth. In order to be wise, counsel cannot be based on the limited understanding that man possesses. Instead, it must come from an infallible God who knows and understands all things. If the advice you’re receiving does not align with Scripture, then I would strongly encourage you to reevaluate your sources of insight.

What are sources of wise counsel in one’s life? The first source should always be the Wise Counselor. And I would encourage you to always go to Him first. Wise counsel can also come several different sources: the Word, your pastor, a mentor, your spouse, a close friend, a parent, or a therapist. Just make sure that whatever advice you receive is based on the Truth, because the Truth (not opinions) is what sets us free.

Let’s take a stroll through the Word to observe God’s take on this issue:

1. “The way of a fool seems right to him, but a wise man listens to advice.” Proverbs12:15

We need to be quick to seek insight from Godly counsel. It can save us from major heartache down the road.

2. “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2

Humility is a prerequisite for receiving insight from others. Pride tells us that we already know everything and don’t need to listen to anyone.

3. “He walks with the wise grows wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm.” Proverbs 13:20

If you want to be wise, find wise people and spend time with them. You will learn a ton!

4. “A simple man believes anything, but a prudent man gives thought to his steps.” Proverbs 14:15

Wisdom causes us to reevaluate how we spend our time, our money, our relationships, and our efforts.

5. “Plans fail for a lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” Proverbs15:22

If we lean on our own understanding and refuse to seek counsel when faced with a dilemma, then we often end up making poor choices, especially if we lack experience. There is power in humbling ourselves and seeking help.

6. “He who listens to a life-giving rebuke will be at home among the wise.” Proverbs15:31

We are wise when we allow people to confront us with God-given truth, even if it hurts.

7. “A wise man’s heart guides his mouth, and his lips promote instruction.” Proverbs 16:23

Wisdom must be in the heart (the wellspring of life) before it can be spoken through the mouth. We must pay attention to what people are advising us to do. And we need to carefully observe how they live their lives.

8. “The purpose of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.” Proverbs 20:5

When used by the Lord, wise counsel has a way of exposing the deepest issues within us. I often refer to this as purging our souls.

9. “A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.” Proverbs 22:3

A wise person individual will heed to Godly counsel and seek the appropriate response in different situations. A foolish individual will continue doing what they’re doing and suffer the unnecessary consequences.

10. “He who trusts in himself is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom is kept safe.” Proverbs 28:26

Trusting in ourselves alone is dangerous. We must seek His counsel and truth to direct our lives in order to dwell in safety.

May we all pursue lives of excellence with the aid of wisdom by seeking God first and being open to wise counsel from God-fearing advisers.

Application Questions

1. Who is the first person you often turn to when facing a significant decision? And is the counsel that you receive rooted in truth?

2. Can you think of two to five people in your life that can provide wise counsel? Who do you know that studies and applies God’s word in different areas of life (e.g. financial, marriage / relationships, parenting, therapy / counseling, ministerial / vocational decisions, and managing others)?

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Thinking of You Today

It’s is early. 6 am early. When the Lord begins to speak that He has something He’d like to share with you today.

As I sip on my hot tea, then God begins to speak……….

This what I believe He is saying to you this morning:

I am thinking of you today. As you get ready, preparing for the day ahead of you – know that I am thinking of you. Take a look in the mirror and delight yourself in what I see, because I do. I made you with My very hands. In My image. It was I who first fashioned the body of mankind and breathed into the nostrils of man – a breath that has lasted for generations. I am yours, and you are Mine. When I see you, My beloved – I see Myself. What does this mean for you? I t means I see hope, strength, and endless possibilities. On the contrary of what many believe, I do not see your faults. Your weaknesses. I see your talents, your gifts, and your natural attributes that to this day melt My heart. I see the good. Why don’t you? Am I not the Truth? Do I not reveal Truth? And speak Truth? I do, My beloved. Truth will set you free, My child. Freedom comes from Christ. Do Me a favor this week. Focus on the good. Take a break from complaint and worry. There are too many opportunities each day to celebrate Me, and the life I have given you. Don’t waste them in focusing on what will perish – on what destroys your spirit. Be joyful! Be glad! Walk in confidence today! You are Mine. You are loved. You are accepted. You are blessed by My hand. Enjoy what I have given you as your Faithful comforter and friend. I am trustworthy and I love you. Be blessed My child.

“This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24

 

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17

 

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

 

“To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples.Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free’.” John 8:31-32

 

“Then the LORD God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.” Genesis 2:7

 

“So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27

 

Photo provided by catholicexchange.com

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Peace in Positive Thinking

President Abraham Lincoln once stated, “We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses.

Both positive and negative thinking can produce tangible and clearly distinguishable results in our lives. It is easy to discern what type of thinking we possess based on the actions we take in our lives. Let me give you an example:

You wake up, and your head is pounding. Your natural instinct is to complain. And that’s exactly what you do – complain and grumble. As you drive to work, a young man almost rams into your car because he fails to obey the traffic light. You start lashing out with names like “idiot” or other words that I won’t mention here. Once you arrive at work, you’re not greeted with warmth and smiles, but with the demands of new deadlines and complaints from a client. Within minutes your day has been hijacked by a whirlwind of negative emotions. After a tiresome day at the office, you embark on a long journey home through rush hour traffic. When you do arrive home, you’re exhausted. But, dinner still needs to be prepped, the house needs to be cleaned, and, if you have kids, they’ll need to be cared for. By the time your head hits the pillow, what do you think is going on in your mind?

“I’m happy this day is over.”  “I barely survived.” “Everything seemed to be against me today.”  “I feel so overwhelmed”  “I’m so stressed.” “Why can’t I get some peace of mind?” “Everyone in the house is just so needy.”

How can we respond in situations like this? I want to look at this scripture passage that the Lord brought to my mind this morning:

Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform (agree, harmonize, adapt, adjust) to the pattern (model, ideal, example) of this world, but be transformed (alter, covert, transmute, modify) by the renewing (restoration, repair, revision, correction) of your mind. Then you will be able (capable, competent, qualified) to test (examine, demonstrate, prove, confirm) and approve (endorse, applaud, sanction, certify) what God’s will (volition, intention, choice, purpose) is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

Here’s what I believe the Holy Spirit was speaking:

The world is fallen because of sin. Why? Because the human race is fallen because of sin. We are by nature sinful, which means it is easy for us to sin. Get the point? It requires no effort for us to fall short.

We must not conform to what naturally exists within us and around us. We must intentionally seek after the mind of Christ.

Let’s take a deeper look into this scripture passage using some of the example synonyms from above:

Do not (implying we have the choice) adjust to the model of this world but be modified by the correction of your mind. Consequently, you’ll be competent to examine and endorse what God’s purpose is – His good, pleasing, and perfect purpose.

We have to put in effort and consciously choose NOT to adjust our minds to all the ways that we naturally gravitate towards (complaining, judging, criticizing, worrying, doubting, fearing). Instead, we are to be modified by the correction of our mind. There must be a source of correction (Jesus), and we must be intentional in seeking after this improved way of thinking. When we choose Jesus’ way of thinking and rely on His grace (we cannot do this on our own), we will be fully equipped to examine and support what God’s purpose is in our lives. This is powerful.

It is through positive thinking that we align our minds with Christ and can live out His purpose for our lives. Not through negative thinking. Negative thinking robs us of God-given opportunities if we are not intentional in our efforts to rebuke it and seek after the good.

Remember beloved, negative thinking is reactive to the situations around us. Positive thinking is proactive as it confronts the situations around us in truth. In God’s truth of who He is and who we are in Him. 

This is so hard. It’s hard for me to be thankful and to give God praise when I don’t feel like it.

Sin is easy.

It’s easy to complain or to criticize others when I don’t like how my day is going. We call it venting, He calls it grumbling. And we must turn away from it through His grace in order to experience the good purposes He has in store.

Look at how the Lord is instructing us to live each day in the following scriptures:

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. ” Romans 12:12

“Do not repay evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.” Romans 12:17-18

“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life – in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. ” Philippians 2:14-16

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” Philippians 4:4

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6 -7

“Finally, brother whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.” Colossians 3:2

“Therefore, holy brothers, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, the apostle and high priest who we confess.” Hebrews 3:1

None of these scriptures are possible to model without the grace of Jesus Christ. In the example above, we can see the effects of negative thinking. Stress, exhaustion, and defeat. We can avoid negative thinking by focusing on Jesus and making the deliberate choice of focusing on the positive in any and every situation. We cannot control what happens around us, but we can control what happens within us.

My friends, we are a product of our thinking. And thank you for choosing His Daily Dose!

 

 

Photo courtesy of divineglowinghealth.com

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