Ever feel like you need to go clear your head? Like there’s too much in between the ole’ ears? When I have fifteen frazzling thoughts vying for my attention, sometimes a walk to clear my head is the perfect prescription.
My friend Sherry gave me a book recently, Get Wise—Make Great Decisions Every Day by Bob Merritt. I devoured it and was so moved by it, Hubster and I promptly gave copies to all three of our boys. (Hubster’s readying to read my copy.) This book is great for guys and gals, plus it’ll clear your head rapidly, filling it with wisdom.
You can find Bob at Eagle Brook Church in Centerville, Minnesota. He’s the Senior Pastor there and Get-Wise is his third book. www.eaglebrookchurch.com
Allow me to tease you with some terrific tidbits while strongly suggesting you procure a copy of this most excellent book at your earliest convenience.
The endorsers give you multitudes of reasons to read this: John Ortberg, Jud Wilhite, Lee Strobel, Shauna Niequist, Bill Hybels, and Wayne Cordeiro (Don’t miss a post hugely inspired by Wayne. He says it like it is.).
I love what Shauna wrote: “Reading Get Wise feels like having coffee with someone who knows more than you and wants the best for you.”
One of Bob’s many talents is the gift of storytelling. He grabs you from the get-go and tells on himself more than once. You’ll laugh your head off while learning how to make wise decisions. He clearly has coined, “It’s not a mistake unless you learn from it.”
Here’s how the book’s set up, so you can either read it straight thru’, or pick and choose your topics:
Bob says, “Part 1 looks at the value of wisdom, how to acquire it, and why the wisdom of a man who had seven hundred wives and three hundred concubines can be trusted.” (!!!) See what I mean about his humor???
“Part 2 is where a wise life begins and why decisions about your heart, mouth, and feet are foundational to the rest of your life.”
“Part 3 focuses on relationships, on the critical decisions you’ll need to make about sex, fools, friends, and revenge.”
Trust me, you’d be a fool NOT to read the chapter on fools! It’s the best!
“Part 4 brings eternal wisdom to the three most critical decisions you’ll need to make about your family:
How to begin well,
How to build intimacy, and
How to raise great kids.” (Oh how I wish I’d had this book when we were raising our boys…)
“Part 5 addresses the top two decisions you’ll need to make about your work, the area where most of us spend forty years of our lives.” Think about that for a minute!
The benefits alone from reading this book will entice you to dive in:
Each of the fifteen chapters are loaded with sound advice. Any time an author uses Scripture to back up his points, I’m sold. Bob is a master at this.
Plus, there’s a set of Discussion Questions at the end of the book. They’ll help you and your Small Group, or Community Group or Bible study group respond immediately to each chapter’s lessons.
My first of three favorite parts comes from Chapter 4: Wise Heart. Proverbs 4:23 tell us, “Above all else, GUARD YOUR HEART for everything you do flows from it.”
Bob reminds us that the heart is “the center of your life. It’s the core, the source, the place from which everything else flows. It’s like a deep well that keeps you alive…It’s the inner spring that sustains your life.”
Bob poses a killer question:
“When God examines your heart, what does he see?”
He also reminds us of Solomon’s eye-opening parallel: “A good place to start is to look at your mouth and feet.” (Oh my….) “…often what you say and where you go reflect the condition of your heart.”
So after you’re fairly flattened by that earth shattering thought, Bob graciously shows us HOW to get a wise heart. This book is amazing!
My second favorite part comes from Chapter Six: Wise Feet. This chapter centers around Proverbs 4:26 “Make level paths for your feet and take only ways that are firm.”
Round two of questions: “What are your well-worn paths? Your paths will predict the outcomes in your life.”
“All it takes is a pair of wise feet that walk away from something destructive and toward something constructive.”
That reminds me of a great visual from Max Lucado’s book, Turn-Remembering our Foundations. He suggests when encountering a temptation to simply TURN and go in the opposite direction. To literally turn away from whatever it is…defining “repent”.
My third favorite part of Bob’s book is from Chapter 11: Wise Beginning. Proverbs 1:7 “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.”
You must read how Bob and Laurie’s marriage began. Nothing short of comical. In spite of several poignant disasters, their marriage did not derail.
But…. (ahhhh you knew that was coming…) Bob shows us a couple of crucial findings:
“Whom you marry will affect every part of your life for the rest of your life….
Marriage is less about finding the right person and more about becoming the right person.”
Quitting isn’t the answer. Bob teaches: “Anybody can quit. It takes people of strength and WISDOM to say, ‘We’ve got a problem. But divorce is not an option, so let’s get some help and beat this thing.’”
Finally, Bob gives us two “ingredients” for locking in a wise beginning. (I’ll give you one of two, hoping you’ll go get the book to find out the rest!)
Bob realizes, “Through all our arguing and uncertainty during that first year, our faith in God was the ONE CONSTANT that held us together. He adds, “Make sure you BOTH have a holy reverence for God as your NUMBER ONE PRIORITY.”
Remember last week Stuart Briscoe reminded us about seeking FIRST the Kingdom….by experiencing, expressing, and extending the Kingdom. He helped us “clean our clocks/calendars”, while Bob helps us clear and clean our heads/minds for wisdom. Spring Cleaning at its’ finest!
Go get some wisdom!
‘Til next time…