So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Ephesians 5:15-16
It does not take long to realize that there is a difference between knowledge and wisdom. The Oxford Dictionary defines knowledge as “facts, information, and skills acquired by a person through experience or education.” It defines wisdom, on the other hand, as “the soundness of an action or decision with regard to the application of experience, knowledge, and good judgment.” In other words, knowledge is knowing information, and wisdom knows what to do with your information. Of course, knowledge and wisdom are important, but wisdom is vital if we want to live lives that honor God. As we understand this, we must pursue wisdom, but we must also encourage the children in our lives to pursue wisdom.
The apostle Paul warned readers to live wisely in Ephesians 5. He wrote, “So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days (verses 15-16). Wisdom calls us to live carefully, living wisely instead of foolishly. This means making decisions based on what we know, especially what we know from Scripture. For example, Scripture teaches that “bad company corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33). Based on this verse, wisdom calls us to surround ourselves with godly people.
There is an incredible promise that we can find in Scripture about wisdom. James 1:5 tells us that “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” So we can ask God for wisdom when we need it! What a promise to claim and to teach to the children in our lives as well. The promise is that God will give us wisdom when we ask.
Let’s be people who choose wisdom. Let’s choose to live in such a way that we not only walk in the path towards wisdom, but our children do as well.
Spend some time talking to your kids about wisdom. If you have young kids, be sure to frame it in a way that they will understand. If they are old enough, talk to them about the difference between knowledge and wisdom. As you have these conversations with your kids, one thing they can do this week is live wisely and share with them one way you will live wisely.
Ephesians 5:1-20 (NLT)
Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.
Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.
Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him. Don’t participate in the things these people do. For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.
Carefully determine what pleases the Lord. Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them. It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret. But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them, for the light makes everything visible. This is why it is said,
“Awake, O sleeper,
rise up from the dead,
and Christ will give you light.”
So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
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