Ministry has been trying lately. Lots of people with lots of need plus other work to be done equals a very tired me. I love what I do but at times it can be hard. It can be, at times, very frustrating too. I get frustrated the most when people deal poorly with decisions in life.
I do understand things from their point of view. I was once a teen, and have not “wised-up” as quickly has I would have liked. I remember people telling me I shouldn’t do this or would do that if it were them. Like many of the people I now give advice to I had a habit of ignoring the wise counsel. Proverbs even talks about this behavior, “The way of a fool is right in his own opinion, but the one who listens to advice is wise.” (Proverbs 12:15 NET) Also, Proverbs 19:20 says, “Listen to advice and receive discipline, that you may become wise by the end of your life.” (NET) Wise counsel is quite valuable. You get the benefit of learning from a mistake without having to actually having make the mistake. This type of learning is called mediated wisdom. You probably have used this more times than you think. Ever been bitten by a snake? If you answered no, tell me why you are scared to get bitten? It might be great. It may even be fun. Doubtful. You have learned from other people’s experience (mediated wisdom) or else you would try EVERYTHING once without fear. Not only is mediated wisdom valuable, it is usually quite simple.
Sometimes we may get very convoluted or complicated advice. More often than not the advice we receive is simple. Do not misunderstand me, simple does not mean easy. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding” is an easy verse to understand but it is by NO means easy to do. (Proverbs 3:5 NET) But, most often the simple advice is what is needed. I love simple advice. I love to give simple advice. I love when people follow the simple advice you give them. So, I offer my new counseling technique courtesy of Bob Newhart.