So I was thinking this morning, what is my response?
Last week was a rough one for our nation. We started out strong with the celebration of Independence Day, and ended with police and civilians hurt and dying on our streets. During this week, we also saw athletes of all makes and models competing to represent our country in the upcoming Olympic games. So, the highs and lows of being an American were out in force. It is crazy to me sometimes that things like this, the best and worst, can hit right at the same time.
So what is my response?
So I could by all accounts go back to my small town comfortable life, and not really concern myself with the struggles of others. I could agree with the need for calm from all sides, that people should love one another, and stop focusing on our differences. I could pray for those affected and pull out a bible verse or two. It doesn’t seem right though. I am insulated from the problem, and while that is good for my life, it is not so good for my soul. It is the old dilemma of the stop sign. There should be one, but it never goes up until someone is hurt. I don’t want to be like that anymore. I don’t want to hand the problem over to someone else, until it somehow touches my family or my neighbors. I need to see those who have been hurt already, as my family and my neighbors.
I started to read this morning and came to the stories of Eve and the Queen of Sheba. How did I wind up with these two ladies? Well, they were both seeking wisdom. With Eve’s story, she disobeyed God trying to get it, and all she wound up with was knowledge. The Queen though, she was more astute. She was looking for wisdom, and came to Solomon to find it. Her story though is very different from what happened to Eve. Why these stories? Well, when I want wisdom, I look to God. OK, so I would love to say I look to Him first, but most of the time He is third or so on the list. On this morning, with this issue, I knew I needed to not waste any time.
I have always been moved by Eve’s desire for wisdom. That is my desire too, but I take particular note of her wrong route to get there. The Queen of Sheba though, her story is one that God reminded me of just today. As I looked at her search for wisdom, I found an example that could help me in my search for a response. She had heard of Solomon’s fame, so she traveled to hear that wisdom for herself. I think of this Queen, seeking wisdom. Why did she travel from her own land? I think of the time that it would have taken for her to reach Jerusalem. This wisdom she was seeking was so important that she took the time and traveled a great distance to get there. There are various theories as to where this queen came from, but regardless of the distance, travel in the ancient world was not easy. This Queen though, did what she had to do to obtain wisdom, it was that important to her.
When she got there, she did not just take anyone, or any snakes, word as proof of Solomon’s great wisdom. Maybe she had learned from the Eve’s mistake, because she tested him with “hard questions”. I get this picture of her peppering Solomon with questions. She was a ruler, and I can only imagine her complicated thoughts in regards to government, people and other countries that she may have had. This was not just any woman. She would have been dealing with the struggles of the ancient world. War, men, famine, ancient technology, men, race and differing religious beliefs. Did I mention men? She had hard questions, but at the same time, we seek answers to questions that are just as hard. Actually, the list looks pretty close to the questions we still have today. When she saw and heard with her own ears his wisdom, she talked to him about everything she had on her mind.
It was then that I wondered why she came in person? Why not just send someone to get the answers from Solomon’s court? Maybe she was having problems in her own land, and had no one she felt she could really trust? I was once told not to be spoon fed the gospel, and I have tried to take that to heart. Maybe she just wanted to hear the information for herself. With no one distorting it with their own opinions.
Such effort to get wisdom? She must have truly needed answers or why such trouble to gain it? I have heard the story of the Queen before, but never wondered why she needed such wisdom. It was presented more as a story about Solomon. (Thus the whole reason behind the “don’t be spoon fed the Gospel” argument) Maybe the Queen was just curious, enamored with the thought of this so wise King. We seem to spend more time on the fact that Solomon was so wise, than her quest for wisdom. I mean if her questions were not of such great importance, why would she risk her life to find answers? And not just right answers, but wise answers.
I am thankful for finding such a great example. She looked for wisdom, and she found it. I would also have to say she probably used it. Why? Well the Queen also pops up later in history, in the words of Jesus. He is talking to religious leaders who wanted a sign to prove His authority. Now at this time he had been healing, and teaching people but they still wanted a sign. Really? So Jesus told them that even the Queen of Sheba will condemn this generation on the judgement day. Why? It was because of the example of her story. She sought wisdom above all else. Those Jesus was speaking to, well they were more interested in their own opinions
So what is my response?
It is this, until I have more direction, I will continue to do what I have been already told. Seek more wisdom, no longer be silent, be justice for someone who needs it and respond in Love.