Be Rich

Read Proverbs 8:1-21

The chief means for attaining wisdom, and suitable gifts for the
ministry, are the Holy Scriptures, and prayer.

- John Newton

A few years ago there was a lottery jackpot that was the highest recorded jackpot in the history of the lottery. The winnings totaled 1.6 billion dollars. During the weeks leading up to the drawing, gas stations all across the country had lines extending for miles with people waiting to buy tickets. When people were asked what they would do with the money if they won, answers ranged from buying an island to paying off debt.

While I didn’t buy a ticket, I too, found myself dreaming about what I would do if I won that much money. I started thinking that with enough money all of life’s problems would be solved. But the writer of Proverbs suggests the exact opposite; more money means more problems (Prov. 23:4-5). Therefore, his encouragement is to be rich in wisdom instead of wealth. Proverbs 8 personifies wisdom who says it’s better to be a poor man who is wise than a rich man who’s a fool.

But why does my heart long for wealth rather than wisdom? I naturally daydream about being wealthy, but I never daydream about being wise. If there was a “wisdom lottery” where the person holding the winning ticket would be infinitely wise, I doubt people would wait in a mile-long line for a chance to win. But we'll drop everything for 0.0000001% chance at a billion dollars.

Perhaps it’s an indication that our desires are weak and immature, that we have been deceived into believing that more purchasing power, a bigger house, and a newer car will actually satisfy us. Wealth is fleeting. It’s here today and is gone tomorrow. But wisdom is enduring because it comes from our eternal God. Be rich in wisdom. Trust God with your wealth. And know that He will provide you with everything you need.

Reflection Questions:

1. According to Proverbs 8, how do the benefits of wisdom outweigh the benefits of wealth?
2. How do you see the desire for wealth instead of wisdom playing out in your heart?
3. With what situations in your life are you in need of wisdom?