Solomon speaks to us of the great worth of wisdom, understanding and humility. These cannot be bought and are worth far more than gold.
The phrase “better than” ties this group of verses together, or so my bible helps informs me. They show what has true value, and it’s not money! Money is something that is useful for a time but it never lasts. It can be stolen from you and has no value beyond what you can trade for it. You are forever in search of it.
Wisdom and understanding require searching too but when found, they cannot be taken away. They impact your life from that moment on. They guide your decisions and shape who you become. The more you receive the better your outcome in life.
Humility from with understanding your position in life. Not your status in society but your true position in the universe. That position is ‘beloved child’ of your Creator. This position is one of submission to your Father. A child should NEVER rule the home. They do not have the wisdom or understanding for that position. They lack foresight and experience. Cooperation is not in their nature. They require God centered direction to grow into an adult who is skilled at decision making, has gained wisdom and understanding, and who recognizes that there is ALWAYS Someone who deserves more honor than themselves.
This is not saying that a person needs to feel like a worm in the presence of others to be humble, but that they have learned that others have as much value as themselves. Humility seeks out other’s needs instead of only focusing on its own. Humility reaches out to help, no matter how inconvenient it is for them. Humility also rightly sees when wrong is being done and chooses not to partake in it. Humility KNOWS that its life is of value to God and lives according to His directions. It does NOT give God direction or directives but bows to the will of the Father.
Jesus modeled perfect humility. He was submissive to His Father, even as He walked in authority over His disciples. His disciples sometimes didn’t walk in perfect submission but they KNEW He was their master and humbled themselves to His plans. The part of His plan that they couldn’t understand and fought against was Him saying He was going to die. Jesus had to put Peter in his place a couple times over this.
During the last meal Jesus and His disciples ever shared, Jesus showed them even more about humility. He humbled Himself as the lowliest of servants as He washed their feet. He did NOT lose any of His position in God’s plan by doing this. He was still their Master but He put their need for one more lesson above His own comfort and status. Just as He laid aside His Heavenly authority when He stepped down to become the Son of Man, so He laid aside His position of honor to serve His disciples need.
Did you notice that the disciples didn’t even voice the need of water for their feet? I bet they would have been fine as they were because they were in His presence. Jesus saw a need and met it, even though it was inconvenient for Him. He did it out of love. It wasn’t just an object lesson but a demonstration of His true love for them. It showed His concern for even the smallest of their needs; they ones they didn’t recognize themselves. And He lost nothing in serving that lowly need.
We lose nothing in caring for others. In fact, we receive a better understanding of God’s love for us when we care for those He also loves. “But Jesus called them to him and said, ‘You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many’” (Matthew 20:25-28). This is GREAT wisdom and understanding. And it leads to true humility.
Father God, thank You for showing me Your great love. Help me love others in that same manner. Give me Your understanding of true humility. Let me walk in it and serve my brothers and sisters with true love. Show me Your way Lord in all parts of my life. I need YOUR wisdom!