Speaking Of Life 4029 │ The Wisdom of Delight
On this Trinity Sunday, we’re thinking about God’s triune nature and how the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit exist in loving communion with one another. One aspect of this relationship is wisdom, and while we often think of wisdom as good judgment, wisdom is actually playful, delighting in joy and generosity. In Proverbs, we read that wisdom is personified as a woman. For example, in Proverbs 8, Wisdom maintains that she was created by God before the earth was created:
The Lord created me at the beginning of his work,
the first of his acts of long ago.
Ages ago I was set up,
at the first, before the beginning of the earth.
When there were no depths I was brought forth,
when there were no springs abounding with water.
Before the mountains had been shaped,
before the hills, I was brought forth—
when he had not yet made earth and fields,
or the world’s first bits of soil.
When he established the heavens, I was there,
when he drew a circle on the face of the deep,
when he made firm the skies above,
when he established the fountains of the deep,
when he assigned to the sea its limit,
so that the waters might not transgress his command,
when he marked out the foundations of the earth,
then I was beside him, like a master worker;
and I was daily his delight,
rejoicing before him always,
Proverbs 8:22-30 (NRSVA)
Wisdom was an active companion and witness to God bringing creation out of chaos. We might think that bringing order to chaos would be more stressful than playful, but Wisdom offers an interesting perspective. Let us continue reading in the New Revised Standard Version,
I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always, rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the human race
Proverbs 8:30b-31 (NRSV)
And now let’s hear it again in the Common English Bible Translation:
I was having fun, smiling before him all the time, frolicking with his inhabited earth and delighting in the human race
Proverbs 8:30b-31 (CEB)
Here we find Wisdom offering playfulness and joy to God during the creation of the world. Some Old Testament scholars suggest that it’s a theological principle that “pleasure and playfulness are built into the very structure” of the world.
Expanding our understanding of wisdom to include playful delight and an attitude that is looking for reasons to rejoice helps us grow in how we think about the triune God on this Trinity Sunday. The Father, Son, and Spirit operate within a context of great love and wisdom that’s expressed in playful delight and pleasure in creation. And that includes us. If God takes delight in us and is always on the lookout for joy, we also should be quick to rejoice in any moments of joy life brings.
It’s wisdom to delight in what God has made, whether that is the beauty of nature, the pleasure of a warm drink on a cold day, or the delight of another person’s smile. On this Trinity Sunday, let’s acknowledge that the wisdom of delight is part of being included in relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. May you embrace God’s wisdom and delight in who Jesus is, who he is in you, and who he is in others.
I’m Michelle Fleming, Speaking of Life.