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40 days of wisdom – wise vs foolish

Parents:

As parents, it is hard to seek wisdom in our own lives let alone teach our children to do the same. Satan desires to paralyze us with guilt over our foolish life decisions. We do not feel we can speak into our children’s lives because of behavior that we exhibited in the past.  Parents who refuse to share  lessons learned from mistakes miss a prime discipleship opportunity with our children. Proverbs empowers Christians to embrace mistakes and learn from them. Use these verses as guidelines on how to speak to your children – 13:14, 16:21, 15:23, 18:20

“Good teaching come from good learning and Proverbs has more to say to students than teachers. Proverbs is concerned with the learning of wisdom. The book makes is clear that there are no good alternatives to learning wisdom. We are either becoming wise learners or refusing to learn and becoming foolish failures. Proverbs encourages us to make the right choice.”(from Life Application Bible)

High School (taken from the Life Application Bible)

Read through these verses and compare Wise Learners and Foolish Failure. Make a chart and then compare it to the following one. Discuss a foolish failure in your life and how you changed or may change to a Wise Learner. Ask your high schooler to pray for you this week to be wise in your home, job and relationships.

Wise Learner vs. Foolish Failure in Proverbs

10:8, 23:12, 25:12 = Quietly accepts instruction and criticism vs. Ignore instruction

12:1 = Love discipline vs. Hate correction

12:15, 21:11, 24:6 = Listen to advice vs. Think they need no advice

13:1 = Accept parents discipline vs. Mock parents

10:17 = Lead others to life vs. Lead others astray

13:18 = Receive honor vs. End in poverty and shame

15:31-32, 29:1 = Profit from constructive rebuke vs. Self-destruct by refusing rebuke

Middle School – taken from  youthspecialties Talk sheets: Psalms and Proverbs

Read the following with Proverbs 18:2. Everyone has an opinion. Some people state their ideas on all kinds of things that they know nothing about. Godly wisdom, however, teaches people to seek understanding, insight and knowledge. It teaches people to listen more than talk. It teaches people to respect others who are speaking or walk away from foolish people who talk inappropriately, too much, in anger, with name calling and those who talk about nothing. How much does your family value words? Do you treasure them or waste them. More verses on your words: Philippians 2:14, Proverbs 27:2, Proverbs 17:5, Titus 2:12, Ephesians 4:29, Proverbs 20:3

Discussion Questions:

1. Have you ever heard someone talk about something that they knew little about? What were your thoughts about the person while they were talking?

2. What would you do in this situation? Your friend always has a lot to say about everything. The problem is, he doesn’t really know a lot about most of the subjects or topics. Sometimes you’re embarrassed for him because he makes such a fool of himself. You want to be his friend, but want to help him too.

3. Have you ever had someone interrupt you when you speak? How does it make you feel when you get interrupted? Do you interrupt others often? Why do you do it? Do you care about what they are saying or only what you want to say?

Elementary and Preschool

Hard-boil one egg and let cool. Mark one egg with an “A” and the other with a “B”, or whatever marks you choose, so you can tell them apart. Show that the hard-boiled egg is easy to spin around like a top, but the uncooked egg will not spin as often as you try. You will compare the hard-boiled egg to someone with a hardened heart who will not receive instruction. Just as we can spin the hard-boiled egg, the devil can make someone with a hardened heart do things they know is wrong because they will not listen to teachers, parents or grandparents. They will not listen to God’s instructions in the Bible either.

What you will say:
I have here two eggs. Except for the fact that one is marked “A” and this other one is marked “B”, they look the same. However, they are very different. Let me show you. I need one volunteer. (Give the volunteer the hard-boiled egg.) What I would like you to do is spin this egg around like a top. Can you do that? That was easy, was it not? Now I need another volunteer to spin this other egg. (Give the second volunteer the uncooked egg.) What is wrong, are you having trouble spinning this egg? Some children may know already, in any case let the children experiment with the two eggs for a moment, and then ask to have them back. Explain that the difference between the two eggs is that one is hard inside, while the other is still liquid. We can spin the egg with the hard inside around.

The Bible says, “Blessed is the man who always fears the Lord, but he who hardens his heart falls into trouble” (Proverbs 28:14). This hard-boiled egg is like someone with a hardened heart and will not accept correction. Satan can make this person do things they know are wrong. Someone who is obedient to the Lord, and does not let his or her heart become hardened can resist the power of the devil. Like this egg with the soft center that we cannot spin around, a Christian who is obedient to the Word of God, accepts instruction and who follows the Lord cannot be controlled by sin. We must make sure our hearts do not become hard, like a hard-boiled egg.