Let’s Not Be Naive

Let’s Not Be Naïve

There is one thing I often forget about when I am parenting… they are only three and 4-years-old. As a result, my expectations often exceed their ability. And to be clear, I am not speaking about their physical abilities. Those limitations are easy to accommodate; perhaps they cannot reach a shelf, their tiny legs can’t keep up, or they just aren’t coordinated enough to tie their shoes. The shortcomings I forget about aren’t their language acquisition or their ability to express their thoughts meaningfully, although that would be extremely helpful sometimes. If I had to pinpoint the limitation that irks me the most, it would be their overall lack of wisdom.   

I fully understand that they can’t comprehend the greater complexity of the world around them. However, I get that children don’t understand the basic principles of cause and effect. They have no idea what will happen when they spin around in circles with a garden rake or a shovel. They don’t pause to consider what will happen when they walk across sharp rocks with their shoes off. 

wis·dom [ˈwizdəm] NOUN

  1. the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment; the quality of being wise: the soundness of an action or decision with regard to the application of experience, knowledge, and sound judgment

Little children don’t have the experience or knowledge to make good/wise decisions. Those events will come with time; however, it does not make my frustrations disappear when I explain why we don’t play with a wasp… even if it flutters on the ground. 

No matter how you slice it, there are gaps in all of our knowledge bases. There are things we haven’t encountered or experienced; therefore, we are naïve and unaware of how they affect us or change our lives. And perhaps that is why the beginning of wisdom is to admit that you don’t have all of the answers and you need to rely on someone else’s knowledge to thrive in the world. 

Proverbs 1:2-7
“To know wisdom and instruction, To discern the sayings of understanding, 3 To receive instruction in wise behavior, Righteousness, justice, and integrity; 4 To give prudence to the naive, To the youth knowledge and discretion, 5 A wise person will hear and increase in learning, And a person of understanding will acquire wise counsel, 6 To understand a proverb and a saying, The words of the wise and their riddles. 7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.”

Here is Solomon sharing this experience and knowledge with anyone that will listen. Yet, there is a beginning, a foundation that directs us to stand in awe and reverence before the Creator. Wisdom is the recognition that we are not the preeminent originator or author of the information. Worded in a more colorful way, we did not hang the moon. When we despise instruction, it consigns us to the realm of foolishness; fools believe they do not need to learn, which immediately becomes the roadblock to gaining wisdom. 

There is a purpose to wisdom. There is a reason to admit that we don’t have all the answers. It is through humbling ourselves and recognizing that we have gaps in our knowledge that we can find peace and confidence. 

Proverbs 1:22, 32-33 –
“How long, you naive ones, will you love simplistic thinking? And [how long will] scoffers delight themselves in scoffing And fools hate knowledge? … 32 “For the faithlessness of the naive will kill them, And the complacency of fools will destroy them. 33 “But whoever listens to me will live securely And will be at ease from the dread of evil.”

It is through this admission that we gain life and security. We can bumble around like children learning through painful consequences. Not only hurting ourselves but those around us. We attempt to handle dangerous and unsafe things, thinking we know better than our Father in heaven. Or, we can trust that His way is best and rest in awe and wonder that there is a God that laid out this wisdom for us to hold onto, giving us peace and security for our everyday lives. Let’s not be naïve and gain wisdom from the Author of this world and reality itself. 


One Response to “Let’s Not Be Naive”

  1. Excellent post. I definitely love this site. Continue the good work!

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