The Wealth of Wisdom | July 25th, 2016
One of my favorite weekend activities is to check out the local antique shows nearby in the Dallas area. I can usually find at least one really good show each month that delivers a fabulous treasure hunt for me which consists of searching for unique, well-made vintage costume jewelry to repurpose into something new.
Over the past several years, I have collected beautiful pieces of vintage jewelry in every color, mainly from the 1940s and ’50s era. One of the most stunning colors used is a rich, dark red that has the look of July’s traditional birthstone, the ruby.
Here are a few red ruby beauties from my collection after I repurposed them into stunning rings:
King of Jewels
Ruby is a gemstone that varies in color from pink to blood-red. It is a variety of the rock-forming mineral corundum. It is classified as a precious gemstone that varies in color from pink to blood-red. The color is due to the element chromium. Rubies are rare because of the presence of silica or iron, commonly found in the earth’s crust, which prevents the formation of a ruby.
All natural rubies have imperfections and color impurities. Almost all rubies are treated in some way to improve the quality with heat treatment as the most common.
Rubies have been mined in several countries including Columbia, Thailand, India, and Japan. A few rubies have also been found in the U.S. in Montana, Wyoming, and the Carolinas.
The name ruby comes from the Latin word ruber which means “red.” In Sanskrit, ruby is ratnaraj meaning “king of jewels.” Ruby is considered one of the four precious stones which include sapphire, emerald, and diamond.
Ruby is incredibly valuable and can command the highest price per carat of any colored stone. The most valuable shade of red is called blood-red or pigeon blood. In 2015, a new record was set at an auction for a colored gemstone when a 25.59-carat ruby ring sold for $32.4 million!
As valuable as it is, the Bible values wisdom even more…
For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies. Nothing you desire can compare with it. Proverbs 8:11
Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold. She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor. Proverbs 3:13-16
The Value of Wisdom
Job, a wealthy and godly man, knew the incredible value of wisdom even with all of his earthly riches. More importantly, he also knew where to find it…
“But do people know where to find wisdom? Where can they find understanding? No one knows where to find it, for it is not found among the living.
‘It is not here,’ says the ocean. ‘Nor is it here,’ says the sea. It cannot be bought with gold. It cannot be purchased with silver.
It’s worth more than all the gold of Ophir, greater than precious onyx or lapis lazuli. Wisdom is more valuable than gold and crystal. It cannot be purchased with jewels mounted in fine gold. Coral and jasper are worthless in trying to get it. The price of wisdom is far above rubies. Precious peridot from Ethiopia cannot be exchanged for it. It’s worth more than the purest gold.
“But do people know where to find wisdom? Where can they find understanding? It is hidden from the eyes of all humanity. Even the sharp-eyed birds in the sky cannot discover it.
Destruction and Death say, ‘We’ve heard only rumors of where wisdom can be found.’
“God alone understands the way to wisdom; he knows where it can be found, for he looks throughout the whole earth and sees everything under the heavens. He decided how hard the winds should blow and how much rain should fall. He made the laws for the rain and laid out a path for the lightning.
Then he saw wisdom and evaluated it. He set it in place and examined it thoroughly. And this is what he says to all humanity: ‘The fear of the Lord is true wisdom; to forsake evil is real understanding.’” Job 28:12-28
The Fear of the Lord
So there you have it! Wisdom is found in God alone. Because God is all-powerful and all-knowing, we fear Him meaning we stand in awe of Him. The fear of the Lord begins when we see our Creator worthy of glory and honor. We acknowledge Him as Lord of our lives, have a sincere commitment to obey Him, and a desire for Him to be involved in the decisions we make by asking Him for wisdom.
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” Revelation 4:11
Now, we will never have the kind of wisdom to understand all the mysteries of God while we are here on earth. That is for God to know and keep secret until those mysteries are revealed to us one day in our eternal Home with Him. Truly something we can look forward to!
As Job explains in great detail how God orchestrated everything in nature to work in harmony, those are examples of the things in this life that we will never fully understand.
God also knows how to orchestrate everything in our lives to work in perfect harmony. He knows it all from beginning to end. There is nothing hidden from Him whether it be past, present, or future. What a huge risk we are taking when we do not seek His counsel first!
Having God’s wisdom protects us from making unwise decisions that can cause pain and suffering which could have easily been avoided if we had simply asked Him for wisdom. It is a gift from Him that we cannot earn, purchase, or obtain in any way on our own. He graciously gives it to us anytime we ask.
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. James 1:5
God’s Gift to Us
We find wisdom by regularly reading, studying, and meditating on God’s Word. This is how God speaks to us. He has graciously gifted us with His instruction book (the Bible) for our lives so that we will have everything we need to know to live a life that is pleasing and honoring to Him. That is the only way we can truly prosper and succeed in any of our efforts.
Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do. Joshua 1:8
Rubies have an earthly value that only lasts for a short time but wisdom has a heavenly value which will last for eternity. Perhaps you have been blessed with earthly, temporal wealth but how rich is your relationship with God?
Do you see your Creator worthy of glory and honor? Do you acknowledge Him as Lord of your life? Are you fully committed to obeying Him? If so, you have the fear of the Lord and because of it, the wealth of wisdom to give you a life filled with the richness of His incredible blessings that reach into eternity.
Jesus told a parable of the rich fool who was completely self-focused on earthly pleasures and left God out of the picture by not asking Him for wisdom when he was faced with making a major decision:
Then he told them a story: “A rich man had a fertile farm that produced fine crops. He said to himself, ‘What should I do? I don’t have room for all my crops.’ Then he said, ‘I know! I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger ones. Then I’ll have room enough to store all my wheat and other goods. And I’ll sit back and say to myself, “My friend, you have enough stored away for years to come. Now take it easy! Eat, drink, and be merry!”’
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! You will die this very night. Then who will get everything you worked for?’
“Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.” Luke 12:16-21
The riches of this life are fleeting. When you include God in your decisions by asking Him for wisdom, your work on earth has eternal significance. Long life, riches, and honor are a few of the blessings you will receive in your heavenly Home…a Home that will be filled with eternal treasures far more valuable than even the finest rubies.
Sparkler #1: Prayer
When faced with difficult decisions, pray and ask God for wisdom. Remember, He knows all from beginning to end. He will give wisdom to you generously because He loves you and desires for you to prosper and succeed in light of eternity.
Sparkler #2: Action
Read, study, and meditate on God’s Word daily to fill your mind with wisdom so you can glorify God and bring Him honor in all you do. This will keep you from taking a path that leads to heartache and pain while keeping you on the one that leads to abundant eternal treasures.
Sparkler #3: Challenge
The fear of the Lord is true wisdom. If you struggle with allowing God to be Lord of your life and do not have a sincere commitment to obey the One who is worthy of glory and honor, ask God to change your heart, mind, and spirit so you can be given the treasure of wisdom worth far more than rubies.
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