Devotions By Jan

Snowy Owl

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Scripture for Today: James 3:17 “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure, then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.”

This pure white plumage on the Snowy Owl is remarkable!  We do not see them too often as they breed on the Artic tundra and only migrate south in search of lemmings.  They are unlike other owls in that they hunt and are active both day and night.  But it is their snow white appearance that makes them stand out!  The females never become completely white, but the males become progressively whiter as they age.

The owl has long been associated with wisdom in Greek and Roman mythology and in Aesop’s Fables.  Perhaps it is because owls are always asking questions!  Today’s verse lists several descriptions of wisdom, beginning with the word, “pure.”  Wisdom is first of all pure.  That makes sense as the beginning of wisdom comes from the fear of the Lord and following His precepts (Ps. 111:10).  The one who is wise is the one who is careful to follow God’s way.  That purity demonstrates itself in the list of characteristics that follow.

Funny, I do not usually link the words, “wise” and “pure” together.  Like so many, I think of the wise as educated, successful, well-respected, well-read and continually learning.  But fearing the Lord and the purity that comes from obeying Him is the “wisdom that comes from heaven.”  It may not be the wisdom widely recognized by the world, but who am I trying to please?  It is not what I know but Who I know that gives me the possibility of living wisely.  He is the source of true wisdom and a life well-lived.

Lord, thank you for giving me wisdom to live life Your way.

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