4 Ways to Wise Up

One of my favorite movies growing up was The Karate Kid.  As a 10 year old, I learned a couple of things from that movie.  Mr. Miyagi is the wisest guy on the planet.  The Crane is the most deadly fight technique known to man.  Now 28 years later, I realize two things:  Mr. Miyagi is an idiot and the Crane is actually the dumbest fight technique known to man!

Mr. Miyagi: “Called Crane Technique.”
Daniel: “Does it work?”
Mr. Miyagi: “If do right, no can defense.”

Not only is “If do right, no can defense” GRAMATICALLY INCORRECT.  IT’S KARATICALLY INCORRECT!  You can see it coming a mile away!   Being an old dude talking in CODE doesn’t make you wise.  In fact, having a great education and tons of experience doesn’t make you wise. I have also known great men and women who have never finished high school who have learned to see things from God’s perspective and know how to apply Biblical principles to the decision that they make.

From my point of view, the definition of wisdom is “the capacity to see things from God’s perspective and respond according to Scriptural principles.”  You only have two options when making a decision:  You can be the wise guy or the fool. Why do we make a foolish decision?

Some foolish decisions are made in ignorance.
We just don’t know any better.

Some are made because of bad counsel.
We ask the wrong people for advice or direction.

Some are made because of selfishness.
We know what the right choice is, but we just don’t care.

Social pressure often causes us to act foolishly.
The world doesn’t value wisdom and we are guilty of not wanting to go against the flow of culture.

None of our decisions seem foolish until we have the “Oh, crap!” moment. You don’t think about eating healthy, exercise or taking care of your body until you get sick or see that unflattering vacation pic taken at the beach. (Yes, I’m speaking from experience!)  You don’t think about your personal budget or stewardship until you have a bill you can’t pay or you get that low balance alert on your account.  You don’t think about working on your parenting skills until your kid comes home and drops the bomb of a life-changing mistake.

Then, we are caught with that dumb look on our face asking the question, “What Happened?” What had happened was…“We made decisions and we didn’t involve God or His Word in the process.” We became the fool.

So, how can we learn to WISE UP?

1.  Ask a lot of questions.
The first step to wisdom is realizing you don’t have all of the answers.

2.  Listen more than you talk.
Run DMC said it best, “You talk too much and you never shut up.”  The quickest way to let people know how foolish you really are is to open your mouth (or rant on social media).

3.  Surround yourself with wise people.
Be careful whom you allow to speak into your life.  Wisdom, as well as foolishness, is contagious.

4.  Study the Word of God.
If you really want wisdom, it comes from God Himself. James, the half brother of Jesus, writes, “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5 (NIV)

There is no area of your life where you don’t need wisdom.  If you truly want to wise up, you must sit at the feet of Jesus.  The bottom line is you can’t see things from His perspective until you have spent time in His presence. 

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