King Solomon, the King of Wisdom, was revered by all of Israel as the wisest man on earth. In this account, two women claim the same child as their own. Solomon proposed that the baby be cut in half, and therefore killed, rather than given to one of the women. The true mother cried out, “Please, my lord, give her the living baby! Don’t kill him!” (verse 26). Solomon never meant to harm the child. He knew that the rightful mother would rather giver her child away than have him killed. The text then reads, “When all Israel heard the verdict the king had given, they held the king in awe, because they saw that he had wisdom from God to administer justice” (verse 28). They were in awe of the great king, but they also recognized that this wisdom came from God.
Consider the source.
We all have idols in our lives. Creators, musicians, moms and aunts who shine a little brighter and make a little more sense. People dripping with talent and poise and perhaps… wisdom. It is fun to appreciate and enjoy this company in our lives, but we must consider the source. C.S. Lewis described it as allowing our minds to “run up the sunbeam to the sun” (Letter to Malcolm). The beauty and talents and gifts we see are a fraction of the infinite glory God possesses.
We must recognize as the writer of Proverbs did, “The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the Lord; He turns it wherever He wishes. Every man’s way is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the hearts. To do righteousness and justice is desired by the Lord more than sacrifice...” (Proverbs 21:1-3). Celebrate wisdom and talent and goodness in your life as part of God’s gracious love for His children. He does not remove His hand from us. He does not let us out of His sight. Because of Him and His direction you are becoming more than you can imagine.
Adopt this perspective with the people you admire and the people you struggle to admire. God is at work. Make a list of those you idolize and ask yourself, “Do I delight in this person more than I delight in the God who made them and gave them their gifts?” Make a list of those you struggle to befriend and ask, “Do I believe that God is for them and their future self?”
Thank you for the many gifts you give to your children. We are vessels of your glory. Allow me to glorify you in how I see others and how I see myself. Forgive me for idolizing some people while not giving others a chance. Let me see what I need to see. Amen.
Author | Claire Jordan