Raise your hand if you were a know-it-all teenager! (Sorry mom.) Okay, keep your hand raised if you are still kind of a know-it-all!
I am raising both hands high in the air. Not in victory, not because I am raising the roof, but because I truly am a terrible know-it-all at times and often confuse book smarts and true wisdom.
Growing up, my parents instilled in me a thirst for knowledge, to constantly keep learning and discovering, to enjoy reading, to ask questions, and to always keep my mind open to new experiences. In our home, education was of the utmost importance. My parents sacrificed and struggled to allow my sister and I to study and grow and learn. I am beyond grateful for that gift.
However, how many times have I confused intelligence for wisdom? How many times have I thought I know better? Too many to count if I'm being honest. And wisdom is more than just following the rules, as we see in today's Gospel message from Jesus. It's knowing what is worth selling all our treasures for: following Jesus (Mark 10:21). It is continually seeking to know God, and asking for His help in living His truths in our lives.
And the First Reading reminds us that wisdom is more valuable than any of our treasures, including my treasured intelligence (Wisdom 7:7-11). I wrestle with gathering knowledge and being open to receiving true wisdom. Perhaps you do too. I find myself wanting to know the answer instead of being shown the truth. If it's not spelled out for me (annotated, single-spaced, deadline met), I find it less digestible.
Do I allow my brain to muddle the message instead of allowing the Holy Spirit to touch my heart to change my actual life?
But "indeed the word of God is living and effective, sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating even between the soul and spirit, joints and marrow" (Hebrews 4:12). Be ready for it with me, sisters!
O mighty and living God, pierce my soul! I am ready!
How can you open your life to actual radical change today, instead of just seeking the treasure we so desire here on Earth?
Dr. Samantha Aguinaldo-Wetterholm is a wife to Paul, mom to two little ones, and practices dentistry at a public health community center for low income families in the Bay Area, California. She (unashamedly) thinks ice cream is its own food group, loves anything Harry Potter, does not leave the house without wearing sparkly earrings, and is an enthusiastic proponent of the Oxford comma. Find out more about her here.