Lived carelessly, life can persuade us that it consists of what we own. Our adornments, our possessions, our accompanying burden of stuff designs to meld itself to our soul-ish identity and become us.
Living carelessly is a dangerous feat. Few survive its calamitous statistics.
When what we have told ourselves that we possess is taken away, we stumble upon the rare opportunity to live carefully. We rediscover that we are not what we own. We are much less than that, and much more. We are much lighter. Yet we also bear the weight of greater solidity.
How much better to get wisdom than gold!
To get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.
Proverbial wisdom tells us that the most portable property is wisdom and understanding. It can go wherever we do. It cannot be stripped away, is rarely lost, usually increases its value as a normal part of its accompanying grace.
Wisdom becomes us in a way that a house or a car never can. The pockets do not bulge with it, for it resides within. Banks, the needy and the estranged, professional opportunists, these can lay no claim to it. One pays no taxes on wisdom.
Though it is not free, understanding does not drag the one who possesses it into financial slavery.
The wise woman, though a deeply serious human being, walks with a lilt in her step. The sagacious man knows he is rich beyond measure, vulnerable to no unwelcome assault.
Such people manage one of life’s uncommon achievements. They are wealthy yet they are free.