How to Avoid Costly Mistakes

Tommy Bolt was a great golfer on the pro tour for many years but he was known for one major flaw, a horrible temper. One year he was playing in a tournament in southern California, and he was still steaming because of a bad round the day before. He angrily told his caddie in a condescending voice not to speak to him that day unless spoken to first and then only to answer with, “Yes, Mr. Bolt” or “No, Mr. Bolt.” Otherwise, he was to keep silent. He asked his caddie, “Do you understand?” In response, the caddie answered, “Yes, Mr. Bolt.” 

Bolt hit his first tee shot, and it appeared to come to rest behind a tree. When they reached the spot, Bolt asked his caddie, “Do you think I should hit a five-iron?” The caddie, obeying orders, simply replied, “No, Mr. Bolt.” Well, Bolt went ahead and used the five-iron anyway and made an unbelievable shot that landed on the green a few feet from the hole. He turned to the caddie and proudly asked, “What did you think about that shot?” As the caddie picked up the bag and headed toward the green, he simply said, “It wasn’t your ball, Mr. Bolt.” (Oops!)

This true story from the PGA reminds us: It’s better to ask for help in advance than to look foolish later. More specifically, it is far better to ask for godly wisdom in advance than to correct a costly mistake later.

The Bible teaches us to pray for wisdom regularly and consistently as needed: “If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him” (James 1:5). Solomon tells us the same thing, “Call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding” (Proverbs 2:3). His father, David, said something similar to his son years before, “Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it costs you all you have, get understanding” (Proverbs 4:7).

According to the whole of scripture wisdom is a big deal. The word wisdom is found in one form or another at least 125 times in the book of Proverbs. This book is part of what we know as wisdomliterature in the Old Testament (Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon). So a major section of scripture is devoted to the subject of wisdom. Yeah, it’s that important!

It’s really quite simple: the right kind of living requires godly wisdom. More importantly, the Lord desires to teach us the right kind of living in our relationships, ambitions, attitudes, business dealings, marriage and family life, speech, financial practices, social interaction, personal activities, citizenship, leisure, in our temptations and spiritual struggles, and with clear-cut moral issues. God says that it takes wisdom to practice the right kind of living and God is more than willing to share it with us if we seek it from Him. So this we must learn to do and be faithful to do in our daily quiet time and in all our lifestyle involvements. 

Ultimately, the blessings of wisdom are found in our relationship with Jesus. In fact, the Bible says in Jesus Christ, “are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3). Paul said about Jesus: “He is our wisdom” (1 Corinthians 1:24). So Jesus is not only the gateway to salvation but also to a life of wisdom. Trust Jesus today and follow Him into a life of wisdom! 

Devotedly yours,
Pastor Ron


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