Dr. John E. Johnson

Dr. John E. Johnson

Monday Morning Proverb

A few years ago, Heather and I were in London to see a show. The word on the street was that Jersey Boys, a jukebox musical dramatizing the formation, success, and break up of the Four Seasons, was a good choice. It was one of those great memories. As soon as I heard them sing Sherry, I knew I was in the right place at the right moment. Memories flooded back to youth, when we hoped girls would come out to our twist parties and dance the night away (or something like that). 

But the London experience almost didn’t happen. Prior to the show, we inquired about tickets by a local vendor and said we would come back. But when we did, this “ticket master” recognized us and rudely slammed his window shut. It was his way of saying–you had your chance. Thankfully,  we found someone else willing to sell, and this time we seized the moment and purchased seats that were still available.

Reading today’s proverb gives a similar warning. The sage tells us that every day wisdom shouts in the street (sort of like vendors). She cries out amidst the commotion, promising to pour herself on us and teach us words of prudence and discretion (Proverbs 1:20-23). Can you hear her voice above the noise? Like a lover, she extends her hand to us. She longs for us and wants us–but not always. Not if her offer is spurned. There can come a moment she also shuts her window, and the opportunity to enjoy what she sells is gone. Her words are harsh and unnerving (vv. 24-31). It may be an overt refusal on our part–“I don’t want God’s wisdom or correction.” But it can also be a quiet indifference, a simple neglect of the disciplines required to becoming wise. The consequences are the same.

Here’s the warning–the Monday Morning Proverb:

“The turning away of the inexperienced will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them” (v. 32).

There is a certain urgency to wisdom. There are consequences to complacency, to procrastination, to the putting off of the opportunity. Wisdom is calling right now. Slow down, seize the moment, and come to her window–before it is shut.



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