Daily D – Proverbs 17:24
Sensible people keep their eyes glued on wisdom, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth. PROVERBS 17:24 (NLT)
The perceptive find wisdom in their own front yard; fools look for it everywhere but right here. (MSG)
Wisdom is the focus of the perceptive, but a fool’s eyes roam to the ends of the earth. (CSB)
We see what we focus on. We see what we are looking for rather than what is right in front of us. A buddy of mine was in a meeting last month. He collected information for a coworker who would participate in future meetings of the same team. However, when my buddy searched for those papers, he could not find them anywhere. Until yesterday morning, that is.
There sitting on his desk was a binder with the papers he had been searching for. It’s always the last place you look. I cannot tell you how many times I have done something similar.
The Message paraphrase of this proverb says, “The perceptive find wisdom in their own front yard.” Turn to Prov. 6:6-11 and you will see what this means. The ants crawling around in your grass provide powerful lessons. I dare say no Ivy League school can improve on those observations.
You can learn a lot by paying attention.
- How can you learn people’s names? Pay attention when they tell you who they are.
- How can you learn something new every day? Read broadly, but not so deeply that you develop tunnel vision.
- How can you master a new subject? Learn, review, and teach someone else what you are learning.
Attention is a gift, like self-discipline, we give ourselves. How many times have you walked away from meeting someone new and thought, “What was his name?”
How many times have you remembered how you read something one time about a particular topic, but it now eludes your grasp?
How many times have you attempted to master a new subject but gave up because there were too many details to hold in your mind at the same time?
Attention is a refusal to allow distractions to disorient us.
One of the finest gifts you can give someone is full, focused attention. When I speak somewhere or lead training events, there are always people before and afterward who want to talk. I like talking. I like making new friends and deepening existing relationships. However, when I am talking to one person, I give him or her full, focused attention even when someone else tries to interrupt.
People tend to save the most important thing they will say until the last thing they say. If I open myself to interruption halfway into a conversation, I may as well have not listened at all.
Perceptive people find wisdom everywhere because they are looking for it and recognize it when they see it. They do not need to waste time, money, and energy on a world cruise to “find themselves.”
Where will you discover wisdom today? Look first wherever you are. Then you will not waste time searching for what is right on the corner of your desk.
I will seek wisdom wherever I am.
Our Father, you instruct us to ask for wisdom. You promise you will give it to us abundantly. You do not look down on us for our lack. Instead, you joyfully increase what we have and provide all we need. How good you are! Give us wisdom for this day and all that is before us. Amen.
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Daily D – Psalm 143:8-10
Psalm 143:8-10 Let me hear of your unfailing love each morning, for I am trusting you. Show me where to walk, for I give myself to you. Rescue me from my enemies, Lord; I run to you to hide me. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. May your gracious Spirit lead me forward on a firm footing.
Daily D – Psalm 142:5
Psalm 142:5 Then I pray to you, O Lord. I say, “You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life.”
Daily D – Ezra 3:11-13
Ezra 3:11-13 With praise and thanks, they sang this song to the Lord: “He is so good! His faithful love for Israel endures forever!” Then all the people gave a great shout, praising the Lord because the foundation of the Lord’s Temple had been laid. But many of the older priests, Levites, and other leaders who had seen the first Temple wept aloud when they saw the new Temple’s foundation. The others, however, were shouting for joy. The joyful shouting and weeping mingled together in a loud noise that could be heard far in the distance.
Daily D – 2 Chronicles 35:22-25
2 Chronicles 35:22-25 After Josiah had finished restoring the Temple, King Neco of Egypt led his army up from Egypt to do battle at Carchemish on the Euphrates River, and Josiah and his army marched out to fight him. But King Neco sent messengers to Josiah with this message: “What do you want with me, king of Judah? I have no quarrel with you today! I am on my way to fight another nation, and God has told me to hurry! Do not interfere with God, who is with me, or he will destroy you.” But Josiah refused to listen to Neco, to whom God had indeed spoken, and he would not turn back. Instead, he disguised himself and led his army into battle on the plain of Megiddo. But the enemy archers hit King Josiah with their arrows and wounded him. He cried out to his men, “Take me from the battle, for I am badly wounded!”
Daily D – 2 Chronicles 32:31
2 Chronicles 32:31 However, when ambassadors arrived from Babylon to ask about the remarkable events that had taken place in the land, God withdrew from Hezekiah in order to test him and to see what was really in his heart.