“You hate discipline; you cast my words behind you… . When you do these things, should I be silent?” (Psalm 50:17,21)

As teenagers, many of us turned a deaf ear to our parents’ advice, cast­ing their warnings behind us. But when we run into challenges down the road, we often find these pearls of wisdom echoing in our memory! “A person is known by the company he keeps.” “To have a friend, you must be a friend.” “Planned deceit is a lie.” “A stitch in time saves nine.” “Think the best of each person.” “You’re never too busy to say thank you.”

The apostles must have had a sim­ilar experience. Jesus said so many wise things, but not all of them made sense at first. For example, it was only after Easter Sunday that they could possibly understand that Jesus’ death was exactly the medi­cine this sinful world needed. They must have spent hours and hours together recalling the words that each of them remembered and discussing the meaning that was becoming clear as they lived this new way together.

It’s never too late to heed the words of wisdom that echo in our memories! His words never fail, and his mercy toward us is new every morning. There is no deadline to putting his words into action.

Jesus told his disciples: “You have but one teacher, and you are all brothers… . The greatest among you must be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but who­ever humbles himself will be exalted” (Matthew 23:8,11-12). He is always ready to teach us—if we are ready to humble ourselves and listen. He is always ready to bless us—if we are ready to lower ourselves and serve one another.

Spend some time today jot­ting down the sayings you often heard from your parents or a favor­ite teacher. Or maybe look at some of the Bible’s words of wisdom. Think about the ones you have put into practice and found to be true. Then ask the Holy Spirit to show you an area where you can continue to grow and learn. God’s resources are infi­nite; there’s always more you can learn!

“Lord, I long to learn more and more from you! Bring to mind what I most need to take to heart today.”

Isaiah 1:1-10; Matthew 23:1-12