If you are wise your wisdom will reward you; if you are a mocker you alone will suffer. (Proverbs 9:12)
Proverbs chapter 9 continues with the personification of wisdom, this time comparing her to another woman, called “Folly” (Prov. 9:13). There are two competing voices calling out to us, and we must choose which way to go.
I used to hike the trails and climb the peaks around Vancouver, back in the “good old days” before GPS navigation and smart phones. An upgrade for us was what we needed to take to get to the peak, and a download was when you added a couple of pounds of rocks to your buddy’s backpack on the trip back to the cars.
My friends and I had one trip out in the Harrison valley that was uncharted, with many forks in the road. Our map was apparently a couple of decades old and recent logging made finding the main path to an elevated ridge above the lake a challenge. We ended at many dead ends that had no clear route to our desired outlook. In fact, there were so many forks in the road that we finally took one out, put it into the dirt, and made a memorial to a frustrating trip. The best we could do was hope that the next wandering soul would find humour in our gesture.
The lesson for me was this: without a clear map my decisions are at best a gamble and that there are consequences to those decisions. God’s invitation is to give us guidance (an updated map) through life’s twists and turns. This is not a guarantee that we will never go through difficulties or struggles, but that if we choose to have it, God gives us a compass that guides us along the journey of our lives.