The second place we get wisdom from is other people. Wise counsel is greater than today's thought. You can look at the world and get many opinions about many things. There could be five subjects and 50 views on those five subjects, but wise counsel is greater than today's thought. You can see ideas come and go, but society never apologizes and says, “Hey we had a bad idea about 20 years ago.” Instead they just shove the next idea in. So, wisdom comes from wise counsel. Do you have men and women in your life, people surrounding you, from whom you are able to get wise counsel? Parents, let us incorporate people in our kids’ lives who are able to speak wisdom into their lives. People, besides us, to whom our kids can go in order to hear wise counsel.
There should be people in your life for when you come to a place where you do not know what to do. You should be able to pick up the phone and say, “Can I ask you a question?” Wise counsel is so crucial. When I started pastoring 14 years ago, I set up a wisdom team. I had five guys, and I called a different guy every week to talk about what we were doing, decisions I had to make, situations we were facing, etc. Because wise counsel is better than today's thought.
Number three, you get wisdom from life. You learn from your mistakes, and you learn from the mistakes of others. Here's the bad news: Often you make good decisions by first making bad decisions. Life many times will teach you lessons, because none of us is perfect. We feel so guilty when we fail: “Why did I do that?” “Why did I not do that?” “How did I not see that coming?” However, here is what you have to understand: God is using those things to teach you. That is why the Word of God says that gray hair is the crown of wisdom. Because you get gray hair by having to make difficult decisions about things that happen. Experience comes from what we have done, and wisdom comes from what we have done badly. A wise man learns by the experience of others, an ordinary man learns by his own experience, and a fool learns by nobody's experience.
We want to learn from the Lord. We want to learn from other people, even in bad stuff. Pay attention when somebody has an affair—how did it go? Learn from that. Look when somebody makes a bad decision—learn from that. Learn from others’ faults. Learn from other people's failures and other people's successes, and learn from life as life teaches you.
Are there people in your life on whom you can count? Are you paying attention to the lessons of life?