The word used in the Old Testament is chakam. The Hebrew definition is 'wise' which includes intelligent, skillful, artful, experienced, clever, cunning, prudent, wise-hearted man in it's application. A further look into the lexical definitions in the back of my bible shows it can refer to the skillfulness of artisans or diplomats or shrewd men. (Exodus 35:10; 1 Kings 5:7; 2 Samuel 14:2)
Lois Tverberg wrote that this word for wisdom works two ways. It applies to those who choose the right way to approach situations, and also to the ability to do a job well. Wisdom is practical not just something we get from heaven. Hmmm.
Listen to this from Lois Tverberg's book:
"As Westerners, we tend to believe that God is only involved in our 'spiritual' activities, such as Bible study or prayer. We imagine that the rest of our tasks are 'secular' and not God's concern. But here we learn that biblically it is considered 'wisdom' to do our jobs well, no matter what they are: using a photocopier, programming a computer, running a lawn mower, or even doing custodial work."Lois also wrote,
"God is practical and down-to-earth. He cares about out credit card debt, about whether our house is a chronic mess, or about how much we watch television. His desire is that we have wisdom in all things in order to live the life he gave us to the very best."Now I see why it's so important to God when I follow his directions to return to the path I just crossed and pick up a piece of trash on the ground. It's showing wisdom in the care of his planet.
God cares what I do and how I do it...this I've always known...no matter what it is. I just never realized that it involved wisdom in it's practical, skillful, wise-hearted sense. I can show wisdom in my actions, not just in answers to heavy questions posed to me. And, not just in choosing the better path in life.
In many ways this is freeing.Yet, in other ways this puts more pressure on me to honor Jesus in all things, not just in my Bible reading or church attendance or prayer time. But then, I think, that's what being a christian is all about, isn't it?