“At Gibeon, the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, ‘Ask what I should give you.’ And Solomon said, ‘…Give your servant, therefore, an understanding mind to govern your people, able to discern between good and evil; for who can govern this your great people?’ It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this.” (1 Kings 3:5,9-10)
If you are asked to choose between a million dollars cash and a book titled: “How to Make a Million Dollars in Ten Years”, what would your choose? There is a saying that if all the world’s richest persons were to transfer all their money to the world’s poorest people, that money would soon return to rich in a matter of days or months. No doubt, wisdom is much better than riches at least in the sense that it is better to know how to make million dollars than to own such.
In today’s first reading, God is moved by Solomon’s prayer because 1. Solomon did not ask for long life. 2. Solomon did not ask for riches. 3. Solomon did not ask for the death of his enemies. Instead, Solomon asked for the following: 1. An understanding mind to govern the people and 2. Ability to discern between good and evil. In summary, Solomon asked for wisdom.
To reward Solomon for asking for wisdom, God decided to grant him not just wisdom but riches and honor as well. Here comes the lesson for today: “When you ask for wisdom, riches become your complimentary gift.” Riches without wisdom is poverty waiting to happen. On the other hand, with wisdom, riches are never far away from a person. To be wise is to be truly rich even if one has no money.
The apostles returned to Jesus with joy for successfully carrying out the mission Jesus sent them. Do you recall Jesus’ instructions to them? Take nothing for the journey except a Staff (Walking Stick), no bread, no bag, no money, wear sandals, and, do not put on two tunics. In essence, Jesus condemned these disciples to a life of material poverty but they went with the most important wealth of all, wisdom! No wonder, they returned with joy.
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, increase my wisdom. Amen.
Bible Study: 1 Kings 3:4-13, Ps. 119:9-14, Mark 6:30-34).