God’s wisdom and the world’s autocorrect

You’re texting someone. Just a quick reply. Nothing complicated. But you’re in a hurry, so you don’t read over your text before you send it. And then you see it: a word that doesn’t belong. Autocorrect strikes again!

Isn’t it amazing how omitting one letter can make a huge difference in what you’re trying to say? Sometimes one letter is all it takes to turn a perfectly acceptable sentence into something profane or obscene or entirely nonsensical.

I do appreciate Autocorrect at times, but it causes me more headaches than it prevents. I know what I’m trying to say. I know what I’m trying to spell. And Autocorrect may just be trying to help, but it’s only causing a lot of confusion.

As I was cursing the Autocorrect feature on my phone this morning, I got to thinking about the Autocorrect function of my own brain. We all have it, you know. Whether it’s our consciences or our life experience or common sense or whatever you want to call it, there’s a voice in our heads that tells us what decisions we should make, how we should treat others, and what’s fair. Sometimes, that little voice is right. But in my experience it’s more like uninvited editing from Autocorrect that only results in confusion.

woman-smartphone-girl-technologyToday’s verses are 1 Corinthians 3:18-20.

Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. As the Scriptures say, “He traps the wise in the snare of their own cleverness.” And again, “The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise; he knows they are worthless.

You can’t overestimate the value of common sense. It’s a priceless gift, and if you’ve got it, cherish it. I truly believe that some people just aren’t born with it. But even common sense has a limit. What we’ve experienced in life can only take us so far. The same is true of our consciences. The source we should rely on to help us sort through the problems in life is the Word of God.

The Bible contains God’s wisdom, and it’s not irrelevant or hard to understand. But it does require that you take God at His Word and that you accept His terms.

The world has its own wisdom, but it has nothing to do with God’s wisdom. The world places value on status and wealth, influence and rank, possessions and personal achievement. The world advocates doing what’s necessary to get to the top, regardless of how many people you have to climb over to get there. If you hurt others, it doesn’t matter. Showing mercy is a sign of weakness. Forgiving people only invites others to take advantage of you. And you can’t be successful and generous at the same time.

That’s the world’s wisdom. The world’s wisdom is good business. It’s common sense. Right?

That’s my Autocorrect. Because see, God’s wisdom is the opposite of all of that. God’s wisdom places value on humility, generosity, and faith. God’s wisdom elevates those who treat others better than they treat themselves. God’s wisdom commands us to forgive those who hurt us. God’s wisdom says that the harder you hold on to your life, the more of it will slip through your fingers.

When I’m trying to make decisions in my life, I want to follow God’s wisdom, but my Autocorrect feature keeps popping up. God says I’ll be blessed if I give to His work, but my Autocorrect pops up to remind me that I haven’t had a paycheck in a few weeks, so I’m not required to tithe. Which one is right? My human thinking isn’t wrong. The first tenth of my earnings belongs to the Lord, and I gladly bring it, but what if I haven’t been paid?

The thing about tithing (and that’s probably a whole different blog post) is that it’s always about faith, whether you make a regular paycheck or not. It’s giving back to God what He’s given to you as an act of faith and humility, showing God with your actions that you aren’t trusting in your finances.

Does the world think it makes sense to give money to God when you aren’t making any? Heck, no. The world would say you’re crazy. And foolish.

And that’s the point. If the world calls you a fool for doing something God says, you might be wiser than you think. The world won’t understand the things you do for Christ. You could be a great businessman but still be a fool where God is concerned. It’s up to you to decide what matters more–the world’s wisdom or God’s.

Don’t let the wisdom of the world sway you from doing what God says is right. God’s wisdom trumps the world’s wisdom every time, and even though people might call you a fool for doing things God’s way, remember that everything is topsy-turvey here. God’s wisdom will seem like foolishness to those who don’t know Him.

Wheat and blue sky at Safe Haven Farm - Haven, KS


Why does the Church always talk about giving? Have you ever wondered about that? Granted, some churches talk about it more than others. My church doesn’t talk about it very often, but my pastor doesn’t hesitate to stand in front of the congregation and ask, especially if there’s a need. But I know of a church in Wichita that absolutely refuses to talk about money. Ever. So which approach is right? Is it right to talk about money in church?

Well, what did Jesus do? Jesus talked about money frequently, whether it was paying taxes or giving to the poor. Money and finances have always been a point of contention with people, and I don’t think it’s necessarily because people are selfish when it comes to giving. More likely, it’s that people aren’t sure that their money is going to be used well. Or that they just feel like they don’t have it to give. After all, in this current economic climate, who has spare change to give the church?

Wheat and blue sky at Safe Haven Farm - Haven, KS

Wheat and blue sky at Safe Haven Farm – Haven, KS

Today’s verse is Luke 6:38.

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.

Money isn’t the root of all evil. Money itself is just a tool that we can use to help bring people to Christ. That’s how we should look at our finances. And some people have more of it than others, but just because you have a lot of money (or just because you don’t have much money) doesn’t determine your effectiveness for God.

Actually, many times, the less you have the more effective you can be because you aren’t trusting your money to help you through. You have no other choice but to trust God to help you.

But I’m not going to focus on whether or not you should give. If you are a believer, it’s your responsibility to give, whether it’s to an established church where you attend or if it’s to a personal fund you use to bless others with when God tells you to. Ten percent of your total income belongs to God. That’s a principle that Abraham started, I believe (I need to check for sure, though, but I’m pretty positive).

What people don’t really think about is that the entire concept of giving stems from trust.

Can you trust God with your finances? Think about it. Do you trust Him enough to give Him ten percent of what you earn?

When I was just starting out working, this was a difficult question. When I made minimum wage (back when it was $5.15 an hour) and worked part time, it was difficult to agree to giving ten percent of my hard-earned money to God (through the church that I trusted to use it wisely). And even as a college student, when I had gotten a marvelous $.25 raise, it was still difficult. Ten percent doesn’t sound like a lot until you don’t have money to buy groceries.

But I made a decision back then to give God what He asked for. He’s given me so much, how can I back up and tell Him no with this? And if He really is who He says He is, He can afford me. If I give Him what I’ve earned (that He gave me the strength and opportunity to earn in the first place), that just means that I have to trust Him to take care of me if I don’t have enough to take care of myself. And He’d never let me down in any other situation. Why would He start now?

I can tell you that this isn’t a difficult question anymore. I have always given to God, and He has always given back — more than I bargained for actually and not just in money. In friends. In family. In time. In the intangible blessings that are too priceless to put a monetary value on.

If you don’t think you can do ten percent, do what you can. Just do something. Just trust Him a little and let Him prove to you that it’s not about money. Giving isn’t about money at all; it’s about trusting Him with your resources. And if you want to give but don’t think you can, ask Him. Ask Him to give you something extra so you can.

God’s a better bet than the stock market. If you’re going to invest in something, put your money behind God’s initiatives because they have eternal payoffs. What’s better? Using your money to stockpile possessions down here that you’ll eventually have to leave behind? Or investing in a church that will help people come to Christ, who you will get to spend eternity with together?

Think about it.