Blessed are those who listen to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. For those who find me find life and receive favor from the LORD. Proverbs 8:34-35 NIV
Sometimes when I am watching a tv program, Pam will need to share something with me. I give a few nods of my head and grunts of “ahuh” to let her know I am listening. I may even ask a question for clarification. But, she knows I am not really listening. So she stands between me and my view of the television. “Yes, dear!”
King Solomon notices that people are divided into two groups, people who follow wisdom and those who reject wisdom. In this chapter, he personifies wisdom as a person that is calling out to others, offering her counsel. Those who find it are blessed.
In our verse today, three words are used to show the intensity characterized for one who is serious about obtaining favor and wisdom.
Šō·mê·a‘ – to listen. The root of this word is shama which is the same word as the verse, “Hear O Israel…” in Deuteronomy. The implication is hearing with a view toward obedience. This is not a fact gathering endeavor. This is seeking understanding for instructions on “how to” do something and a willingness to “obey” the advice.
Liš·qōḏ – watching. This word carries the idea of increased attentiveness. Other characteristics of the word include, being alert, sleepless, and station a guard as a lookout. This person would be noticing a shift in patterns or the arrival of a new insight.
Shamar – wait or keep. This is the same word God used as He placed Adam in the garden and gave him the responsibility to “shamar” (keep) the garden. This is not sitting down and dozing off while waiting. This is a narrowly focused attention to keeping things valued and nurtured while waiting for the inspection to come. The five wise virgins had their lamps ready for the arrival of the bridegroom.
Listening, watching and waiting are active and intentional activities in regard to finding wisdom from God. Jesus said, “let him who has ears to hear the Spirit, listen”. Here are a few questions to help drill down this blessing.
- What’s the last word from God, that He spoke to you? It may have been about a sin that needed confessing, a prompt to action, a redirection of your time or money. God is speaking, what’s He saying?
- What does watching for God look like in your life? How alert are you to His ways and advice? Have you lost any sleep in pursuit of God for an answer? It is different than losing sleep because of worry.
- How do you incorporate waiting upon God in your life? Would someone identify you as a “wait-er” on God? How much time do you devote to waiting?
- What examples from your life would you share with another that give evidence that you are listening, watching and waiting to find God’s wisdom for your life?
This blessing comes to those who are on the path to finding wisdom. It does not expect perfection, just obedience. Wherever you are on your path to God, make sure you are moving in the right direction of listening, watching and waiting. Blessing and favor rest upon those who follow God’s leading
Blessings Love y’all