Monday, February 16, 2009

OnFire #177 Wisdom and Dishwashers

OnFire Encouragement Letter

Hi Folks:

Two items to note about OnFire. Last week I added two more introductions to the website. One in on Esther and the other is on Acts. Go to and follow the link to "Bible Reading Tips Page." You’ll also find intros for other books: Psalms, Proverbs, Galatians, 1,2,3 John. You’ll also find an intro to Bible reading which is my most viewed article.

This week I created a blogsite for those who want to comment more publicly about OnFire. Until now, people commented directly to me, which is always encouraging but did not normally allow others to see the comments. Go to to view the letter as a blog.

Taka continues to fit in well. He is very tired lately, but this may be a result of continued adjustments and the energy it takes to work in a foreign language. His appetite is great. Tonight we barbequed some steak and he ate more than the rest of us. We have found a friend in Moncton who married a Japanese woman and we’re planning to get together so that we can continue to make sure he is doing well and he has what he needs.

Blessings for your week.


Our portable dishwsher wasn’t working properly. After running a load there was still water in the bottom. But it didn’t do it all the time, so that made the problem particularly annoying.
I took the racks out and examined the strainer at the bottom. Nothing seemed to be caught there. I was at a loss to explain what was going on.

At times like this I often call my friend Nancy, who works at an appliance repair shop. She has talked me through problems in the past and has saved us quite a lot of money.

Jan came to me earlier today with the bad news again. There was water in the bottom of the dishwasher, and in addition, the water running out of the dishwasher into the sink was dribbling instead of spraying. Clearly there was a blockage.

I was just about to pick up the phone to call Nancy when I thought to check the hoses coming from the back of the machine. I pulled them all the way out and tried again. A steady stream of water told me the blockage was clear. Apparently the hoses kink when not pulled out fully.

It is good to know that I have some friends to call when I need help. And it is especially good to know that there are friends I can call who will help get me out of trouble even when I caused it for myself. About five years ago I mixed the gas wrong for my chain saw and it quit. My friend Norm fixed it for me and has never hinted or teased that I might mix the gas wrong again.
James 1:5* says, "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."

Wisdom in the Bible is different from the way we often think of it. We get this idea that wisdom is removed from everyday life. The guy with a white beard sitting on the mountain giving advice which sounds profound but no one understands. I might as well ask my dishwasher. That is not the wisdom we see in the Bible.

Wisdom in the Bible is knowledge which is put into use. The person who is wise not only knows the right answer, but does it. That is what wisdom is all about in the Bible.

This helps us understand what James tells us about God in this verse. Take a look at what we learn about God’s character and nature. God is wise, he wants us to be wise, he is generous, and he wants us to give us his wisdom. Not so that we can say profound things no one understands. Rather, so that we can know the right thing to do. The wisdom God gives is very practical because he does want what is best for us.

This is a fundamental promise we can count on about God’s nature. God will give us wisdom when we ask. Frankly, I’m glad. There is hardly a day when I don’t face some sort of problem bigger than I know what to do with.

Notice one more thing. God gives wisdom generously "without finding fault." He doesn’t say, "I told you so." He doesn’t tell us to dig ourselves out of the mess we made for ourselves. Nor does he stand around reminding us how many times he bailed us out.

God gives wisdom. We just need to ask. Hope this helps. Be on fire.


OnFire is a weekly letter on faith and character written by Troy Dennis. Troy is the Pastor of Family Ministries at Highfield Baptist Church, Moncton NB Canada. This letter published Feb 16, 2009. *Bible reference taken from the New International Version. To subscribe or reply, email Archives are located at Blog located at

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