So here I am again writing a few words under the heading, “Words of Wisdom.” Always a challenge for me! Perhaps I could answer part of what Words of Wisdom could mean by saying, “Don’t take harmful drugs or smoke cigarettes or abuse alcohol especially when you are minding children or operating machinery, in particular a motor vehicle, but even a lawnmower.” I have just watched last episode of the 3 part series on ABC called, “Shaun Micallef’s On the Sauce”, which brings a sobering eye to Australia’s relationship with alcohol. You can watch this on ABC iView. Most interesting series, but also very sad especially when we consider the harm that alcohol causes in our country. Shaun does not drink alcohol and sadly recently lost a sister in law from the effects of excessive drinking. Shaun interviews many people including a lady called Donna from Adelaide who has had a liver transplant and is now doing well. I know Donna and one of the things that I admire about her is her total reliance on Jesus as her personal Saviour. One of the things that is highlighted amongst people with addictions, particularly alcohol dependence, is the lack of hope that they live with. God calls us all to help each other, to pray for one another and not to judge. None of us are immune to the pressures and temptations of this fallen world and we can find help for ourselves and others in knowing what Jesus has done and keeps doing for us. The Apostle Paul writes,
‘For Christ did not send me to baptize but to preach the gospel, and not with words of eloquent wisdom, lest the cross of Christ be emptied of its power. For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written, “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart.” Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.’ 1 Corinthians 1:17-25, ESV.
The Cross, when mentioned in the New Testament, reminds us that Jesus died a horrible death for our sins and then He rose again for our eternal existence with Him. I enjoyed the ABC series but as a follower of Jesus I realized how sad it is to leave the viewer simply feeling guilty because they may drink alcohol to excess. I do hope that better health would be a great motivator for them but it’s still not enough. I wonder about the spiritual side of our being. I believe that understanding what Jesus has done for us is the “life changing experience” that will help us to look for our “hope and purpose” in the Cross, not in external and temporary stimulants.