As seen frequently in Proverbs (2:2, 6; 3:13, 19; 4:5, 7; 7:4; 8:1; 9:10; 16:16; 19:8; 24:3), wisdom and understanding are paired together here. With wisdom being the key concept in the book, it appears that connecting with wisdom naturally leads to a connection with understanding, as well. Defining wisdom as seeing life from God’s point of view and understanding as recognizing how right choices lead to good outcomes, they are an unstoppable pair to making a meaningful life for anyone.
Both are seen yelling (“call out” and “raise her voice”) at key locations around the ancient city (“on the heights along the way,” “where the paths meet” and “beside the gates leading into the city”). The same location as the city’s markets, these were the best places to get the attention of the most people (see also 1:20-21).
Thus, these verses indicate wisdom and understanding are out in public – totally accessible and available – and actively seeking to develop a relationship with any and all who will pay attention! We don’t have to be intellectuals, highly educated, rich, famous, powerful or even know the right people. Wisdom and understanding are in the streets looking for us!
What a thought. We are familiar with immoral women out in the streets calling to anyone who might be interested. Here are two powerful character qualities – personified as women – also out in public actively seeking anyone interested in making meaningful changes in their lives.
I responded to their call some three decades ago and attribute the meaningful life and ministry I’ve been experiencing over these years as a direct result of that encounter. If you’re interested, join me! Wisdom and understanding are available to anyone ready and willing to receive them.