Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore, do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.
— Ephesians 5:15–17
Unwise decisions have their rewards. There is the merriment, escape and comradery of unwise drink, the physical and emotional pleasure of unwise relations, and the financial soar of unwise business. Of course, there is the potential for addiction, disease, and destitution. Perhaps what is wise is to weigh the risks and rewards before proceeding. But is this all that wisdom requires of us, the weight of reward versus risk here in this earthly life?
“We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered to us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea.”
— C.S Lewis, The Weight of Glory
Compared to heaven, this earth is a slum. And God, in his love and graciousness for us, brings his beauty into this slum so that we may sense him while not fully with him. We may know him while not fully in his presence. We may see him through a glass darkly. The sunrise, the sunset, the baby’s face, awe and wonder, love and peace, and all other good things are from the Lord alone, for he is goodness itself. And to us, God has granted the ability to apprehend his goodness in the physical world around us and the moral realm inside of us.
And though we are given the gift of comprehending God’s goodness, we may also refuse it. We can choose to follow God’s guidance, or we can reject it to our ultimate demise. Thus, true wisdom is not to follow the most pleasurable and least risky path, but to follow the path of the Lord come what may.
And the fullness of God’s goodness and wisdom manifested in his son, Jesus Christ. Through him only will we know true wisdom.
So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
— John 8:31–32