“Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.” —Proverbs 15:22
Here’s a piece of solid advice—not to mention it comes from a really smart guy.
Of the one who shares this gem, the Bible says: “Solomon’s wisdom was greater than the wisdom of all the people of the East, and greater than all the wisdom of Egypt” (1 Kings 4:30). The question is, do we have the wisdom to appreciate his good word?
In sum, Solomon says the wise are patient enough to collect sound counsel before moving forward. Fools, not so much. This contrast is expressed in context of failure and success: Rush in and fail. Gather sound advice first and succeed.
There are good reasons to seek counsel. It may be that you are too close to something, too emotionally invested to see the whole picture through an unbiased lens. It may be that it’s an area where you lack expertise or experience.
Or perhaps you face a decision that will have vast or rippling effects far beyond your purview. Others can offer invaluable perspective.
But there are as many reasons we use to justify forging ahead without counsel. We may be embarrassed or too proud to ask for help. We may be impatient. We may not want to risk hearing anything negative about our plans. So we forge ahead.
This proverb’s promise: Go it alone…to peril.
The reasons for seeking (or foregoing) counsel speak to the kind of advisors we need in our lives. We need advisors who care about us, won’t seek to humiliate or embarrass us, and who will care enough to say hard things when necessary, in a gentle yet forthright manner. These are invaluable friends.
Who’s on your team? Whose voices do you hear above the fray? What are they saying? Are you listening?
My prayer for this week:
Lord God, you’ve endowed me with responsibility. You’ve also blessed me with people who have much insight and advice to share. Please grant me the courage to seek their counsel, and the wisdom to apply it as you would have me to—growing me, enriching the work of my hands, and blessing others.