Monday, May 20, 2013

Who are the wise?

Yesterday marked the end of the Easter Season and today we enter what I think of as the real challenge, living the gospel in Ordinary Time. This week the readings begin our trip through the Book of Sirach, aka Ecclesiasticus (not to be confused with Ecclesiastes). The wisdom of Ben Sira, while not considered by Protestants or modern Judaism part of the Canon of Scripture, is held by the Catholic and Orthodox Churches to be part of the inspired word of God and included in the Bible and is quoted frequently in the Talmud. It most closely resembles proverbs in that it is a collection of ethical sayings.

To it opens by reminding us that "All wisdom comes from the LORD" and ends by telling us "he has lavished her upon his friends." In the middle, today's reading tells us that wisdom was created through the Holy Spirit.

The mistake we make is that we think of wisdom as a gift given to only a few. Today's reading reminds us of the superabundance of wisdom that God has poured out on us who are his friends. It's not that we lack her (Wisdom is depicted as female). We have access to her constantly through the Holy Spirit. What separates the wise persons is that they are the ones who take time to be still, and quiet, and listen to her.

Today listen for the voice of wisdom. You never know through whom, when or where she will speak to you, but we do know

God lavishes wisdom upon his friends