The text this week is Proverbs 8:1-11, 22-36
Wisdom here is personified as a woman who calls out – at the crossroads, at the city gates. She yells to whoever will listen it seems – learn prudence, find intelligence. Be seekers of righteousness, of right living.
Last week, I had a short set of slides to show my congregation of how Sophia has been artistically interpreted over time. Here are some of the renditions of Sophia that caught my eye.
And it seems this same Lady Wisdom was calling this righteousness at the beginning of creation – telling the mighty waters of the ocean where its limits were (v. 29) The image of assigning the ocean its limit is one of my favorites in all of scripture. I live only an hour from the shores of NJ. The “psshh” of the water as it hits the sand and the sound of it being drawn away by the undertow has a calming affect on my breathing and my heartrate. To imagine Wisdom personified standing beside the Creator, instructing how the waters should be gathered, where they should begin and where it should end. Was it wisdom who instructed the ocean to make that sound that I love so?
We're not a culture that likes to be given limits. In spending, in eating, in time spent binge watching netflix. We enjoy excess; perhaps what we really enjoy is the lack of limitation, the freedom to do as we please for no reason other than we can.
Wisdom seems to be the person who draws limits in our lives. She defines righteousness. She does it at the crossroads of our lives and at the places where things come and go (the gate).
Last week, I began the series by suggesting that Lady Wisdom “get a seat” at the table of our mind. When we are seeking the right path, she wants a say. And personifying her like this helps us imagine her pulling up a seat beside the others who already get a say in our lives. I suggested a table that looks like this -
I'm challenged by this idea that Wisdom asserts herself - calling to us from the crossroads and at the place of coming and going in our life. Last week, I was suggesting we need to be intentional about Sophia getting a seat at the table, having a say. This week I'm wondering if Sophia is speaking freely but our job is to look at the right areas of our lives - the crossroads or the comings and goings of our lives, the transitions.
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