December 20, 2014
Joy and Sirach 6
Today we come to the end of the wisdom recorded by Jesus ben Sirach, the last of the Wisdom Books offered by the ancients; and we discover that all we need to know about finding wisdom is within. All we need do is rest in the wisdom of the Lord . . . and in this we find great joy. If today’s Noontime calls you to search for more ways to encounter wisdom or joy, click on those words in the categories cloud in the blog’s right hand sidebar and choose a reflection, or enter the words in the blog search bar. You may want to visit the Joy for the Journey blog at www.joyforthee.blogspot.com. Today we determine to rest in wisdom, to rest, to rest in wisdom, to rest in the Lord.
Reflecting on Sirach’s description of wisdom, we pause with these verses from Chapter 6 (18-37) Click on the scripture link and compare different versions of these words and rest in the Wisdom that speaks within.
My child, from your youth choose discipline;
and when you have gray hair you will find wisdom.
As though plowing and sowing, draw close to her;
then wait for her bountiful crops.
For in cultivating her you will work but little,
and soon you will eat her fruit.
She is rough ground to the fool!
To encounter true wisdom we must allow ourselves to rest in God . . . and this can be as difficult as plowing a spring field after the ice and snow of winter.
The stupid cannot abide Wisdom.
She will be like a burdensome stone to them,
and they will not delay in casting her aside.
For discipline is like her name,
she is not accessible to many.
Listen, my child, and take my advice;
do not refuse my counsel.
Put your feet into her fetters,
and your neck under her yoke.
Bend your shoulders and carry her
and do not be irked at her bonds.
To encounter true wisdom we must allow ourselves to rest in God . . . and this can be as difficult as bending our necks in obedience to a plan that is not of our making.
With all your soul draw close to Wisdom;
and with all your strength keep her ways.
Inquire and search, seek and find;
when you get hold of her, do not let her go.
Thus at last you will find rest in her,
and she will become your joy.
Her fetters will be a place of strength;
her snare, a robe of spun gold.
Her yoke will be a gold ornament;
her bonds, a purple cord.
You will wear her as a robe of glory,
and bear her as a splendid crown.
To encounter true wisdom we must allow ourselves to rest in God . . . and we will discover that the yoke we thought a burden has become a source of joy.
If you wish, my son, you can be wise;
if you apply yourself, you can be shrewd.
If you are willing to listen, you can learn;
if you pay attention, you can be instructed.
Stand in the company of the elders;
stay close to whoever is wise.
Be eager to hear every discourse;
let no insightful saying escape you.
If you see the intelligent, seek them out;
let your feet wear away their doorsteps!
Reflect on the law of the Most High,
and let God’s commandments be your constant study.
Then God will enlighten your mind,
and make you wise as you desire.
To encounter true wisdom we must allow ourselves to rest in God . . . and this will fill us with such great joy that we will be moved to share it with others.
Choose another chapter from the Book of Sirach, compare the verses in different Bible versions, and allow God’s wisdom and joy to fill you in this time of Advent waiting.
For more information about anxiety and joy, visit: http://riselikeair.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/anxiety-joy-a-journey/