I was reading today’s Proverb and this one stuck out…
Proverbs 23:12 Apply your heart to instruction
and your ears to words of knowledge.
I have some mentors that when we meet I know I will get homework. I know if I go to our next meeting and I did not do that homework for anything else than an emergency, our meeting is over and we will meet next time to discuss what I have done with their homework.
This proverb begins in Apply. Information without application is useless. So many churches are deep in information and instruction, yet fail to give clear application. Many churches are considered not relevant or hard to understand. I believe this is why so many people are leaving the church. Right now college basketball coaches are calling timeouts during a game. Could you imagine if the coach gave a bunch of information about what is happening, but failed to tell the team what to do about it? They would not change the situation. Application is vital to great information. Application of great information leads to transformation!
Not only apply but “Apply your HEART.” Have you ever seen someone go through the motions in a game or at work but their heart wasn’t in it? It is so sad to see. They are terrible to be around and their attitude is like a virus. It affects everything it touches. I have see so many times more talent with out heart loose to less talent with heart. The WHY is simple, there heart is there. Is your heart in your application of wisdom, teaching, and council? Or do you ask 300 people what you should do and get confused by 300 different answers when you should have only asked 2 who could guide you through the murky waters.
“And your ears to words of knowledge.” God has strategically place people around you who are further in the journey than you and have a perspective you need to grow. The proverb is asking, “are you listening to the right people?” It isn’t saying listen to someone who has an opinion. Everyone, including your crazy uncle, has an opinion! It is saying listen to those who actually have a perspective worth applying. If you get financial advice from your broke uncle, if you apply his advice you will be as broke as he is. If you get financial advice from someone who is walking in the benefits of years of applied wisdom, if you follow his advice you will likely be walking in the fruit of that wisdom.
So who’s wisdom do you need to put your ear to? Who’s guidance do you need to apply? Application of great information leads to transformation! Go get wisdom and apply it! Go be vital!
Recklessly, obsessively following Jesus!