Listen to this devotional:
Isaiah 9:6a – For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be upon his shoulders, and he will be called Wonderful Counsellor. (NIV)
Proverbs 15:22 – Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisors they succeed. (NIV)
The noise — a dim sound — continued to combine itself within the format of my dreams, until my subconscious gradually nudged me into wakefulness. Glancing at the bedside clock, I noted the hour: 4:15 a.m. The noise had now become a rustling, bumping reality. It seemed to be coming from directly above me, on the roof. As the clamour continued, I determined to leave the warmth of my bed for further inspection.
Rising, I tiptoed to the window and drew aside the drapery. At first, all appeared quiet and empty in the parking lot adjacent. Suddenly, a shadow moved. As my night vision adjusted, I noticed a young man in the midst of heaving a handful of gravel toward our roof. The resulting clatter overhead, however, certainly seemed much louder than a mere handful of pebbles. Pulling against the window, I budged it open enough to holler at the stone heaver. He paid no attention. In fact, he redoubled his efforts, until I threatened to notify the police if he didn't desist immediately. At these words, he turned and fled into the darkness. Shrugging my shoulders, I padded back to bed.
Just as I began to snuggle down and doze off, the racket returned. Leaping up in ferocious aggravation, I tore to the window. Pressing my face hard against the glass, I peered into the night. Nothing! The bumping and the rustling, however, was now becoming more of a groaning squeak. My gaze shot upward into the boughs of the giant poplar which stood beside the house, just in time to meet eyeball to eyeball with the descending black bear. Who scared who the most is still debatable. I had time only to count the bristly whiskers protruding from around his wet muzzle before he recovered his composure, resumed his descent, dropped to the ground, and made good his get-away around the corner.
The following morning, my neighbour told the story to me. He had viewed the whole hilarious affair. From his vantage point, he could see the bear on the roof, while the main difficulty had remained hidden from me. He was outside of the situation. I was enmeshed within it.
So often, I have found life's problems to be similar to this incident. We become so involved — so close to a situation — that we cannot see it clearly. At such times, I have learned the wisdom of seeking outside counsel. Sometimes, it is as simple as seeking Christ, the Wonderful Counsellor. Through the power of prayer or the power of His Word, I have been given insight and answers to my problems. At other times, He has led me to seek human counsellors whom He has blessed with His wisdom to teach me to see that which is hidden or unseen, so that my problem might be alleviated.
Today, if we are struggling with an unseen problem or lack the wisdom to deal with an ongoing one, we need to stop and turn to the Wonderful Counsellor. Let us seek His face and His advice. He will not fail us, for it is written:
James 1:5-6 – If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. (NIV)
Prayer: Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, we give You thanks this day for Your wisdom and love which is ours for the asking. May we be humble enough to ask and receive. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.