“Listen, Wisdom Is Calling” Video

Listen! Listen!
Listen, Listen!

Listen, listen, Wisdom is calling,
teaching us Her fairness and peace.
Guiding us to love one another,
She will help all violence to cease.

Listen! Listen!
Listen, listen!
Follow, follow, follow, follow!

Follow, follow, Wisdom is leading,
showing us Her pathway to right.
Let us go together with Wisdom;
She will lead to kindness and light.

Listen! Listen!
Listen, listen!
Follow, follow, follow, follow!
Rise up! Rise up!

Rise up, rise up, Wisdom is coming,
bringing gifts more precious than gold.
She will shower us with Her blessings;
with Her grace our talents unfold.

Listen! Listen!
Listen, listen!
Follow, follow, follow, follow!
Rise up! Rise up!

Music: Larry E. Schultz
Words: Jann Aldredge-Clanton
Visual Artists:
Elizabeth Zedaran, “Flow”
Mary Plaster, “Sophia, Divine Wisdom”
David Clanton, “Tree of Life” & photo of dancing children
Angela Yarber, “Sophia”
Mirta Toledo, “Saint Sophia”
Alice Heimsoth, photo inside Ebenezer/herchurch Lutheran, San Francisco
Recorded and Produced by: The Lodge, Indianapolis, IN
From Imagine God! A Children’s Musical Exploring and Expressing Images of God
(Choristers Guild, 2004).

"Sophia" by Mirta Toledo

“Sophia” by Mirta Toledo

Our world is in deep need of the healing that Divine Wisdom can bring. Many years ago commentator Bill Moyers wrote, “The news is not good these days. What we need is what the ancient Israelites called Hokmah (“Wisdom”), the capacity to see, to feel and then to act as if the future depended on us.” The news is even worse now. And the future of our world does depend on us. Wisdom calls us to join Her in actions that bring peace and justice.

The Bible records Wisdom’s saying, “From everlasting I was firmly set, from the beginning, before earth came into being” (Proverbs 8:23). Wisdom has been here from the beginning, but She has too often been stifled, demeaned, or ignored. For centuries She has also been in the Bible, but She has too often been excluded from worship. Wisdom is Hokmah in the Hebrew Scriptures and Sophia in the Greek New Testament.

In all my years growing up in church I never heard God referred to as “She,” even though the Bible presents Wisdom as a prominent female personification of God and refers to Wisdom as “She.” Most churches still exclude Wisdom and other biblical female references to Deity. But those who include Her and follow Her are deeply blessed. “Happy are those who find Wisdom. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with Her. Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all Her paths are peace. She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of Her; those who hold Her fast are called happy. Prize Her highly, and She will exalt you; She will honor you if you embrace her. She will place on your head a fair garland; She will bestow on you a beautiful crown” (Proverbs 3:13,15,17-18).

New Testament writers link Wisdom (Sophia) to Christ. The Apostle Paul refers to Christ as “the power of God and the Wisdom (Sophia) of God” (1 Corinthians 1:24), and states that Christ “became for us Sophia from God” (1 Corinthians 1:30). The book of Proverbs describes Wisdom as the way, the life, and the path (Proverbs 4). The writer of the gospel of John refers to Christ as “the way, and the truth, and the life” (John 14:6).

More than ever, our country and our world are in deep need of Wisdom. But Wisdom is sadly missing. Instead of Wisdom, we have racism, sexism, misogyny, heterosexism, classism, and other injustices. Instead of Wisdom, we have violence. Instead of Wisdom, we have greed. Instead of inclusive images of Deity that affirm all human beings as created in the divine image, we have exclusively male images that devalue more than half of humanity. We need Wisdom and other female divine images so that there will be justice for females and for all human beings. Without Wisdom we all suffer.

"Sophia, Divine Wisdom," by Mary Plaster

“Sophia, Divine Wisdom,” by Mary Plaster

Wisdom, a female divine image, can help to overcome injustice and to create a world of shared power. Including female divine images gives sacred value to women and girls who for centuries have suffered from abuse, oppression, exclusion, discrimination. In the U.S. alone, every 15 seconds a woman is battered. One in three women experiences some kind of abuse. Seventy percent of the poor are women. Only 20% of members of the current U.S. Congress are women. By balancing female and male names for Deity, we give strong support to the equal value of women and men. When God is seen as female, then women and girls are seen in Her image and thus respected and valued. Including female divine names and images in our worship lays a foundation for change that contributes to equality and justice.

Listen! Wisdom is calling. For so long She has been calling us to justice and peace. “Wisdom cries out in the street; in the squares She raises Her voice. At the busiest corner She cries out; at the entrance of the city gates She speaks: ‘How long, O simple ones, will you love being simple? How long will scoffers delight in their scoffing and fools hate knowledge? Give heed to my reproof; I will pour out my thoughts to you; I will make my words known to you’” (Proverbs 1:20-23).

In a world of divisions and brokenness, hatred and violence, Wisdom can bring peace, love, and wholeness. Let us name Her and celebrate Her in our worship. Let us listen to Her voice! Let us follow Her pathways to peace! Let us rise up with Her to bless the world!

 

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3 Comments

  1. Colette Numajiri
    Posted June 29, 2017 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

    That’s the best blog article I’ve ever read. That’s everything anyone needs to know. And thank you, we’ve always loved that song!

  2. Angela Smerz
    Posted July 6, 2017 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Thank you for the reminder to open our hearts and our minds!

  3. janna
    Posted July 12, 2017 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Thank you, Colette and Angela, for your kind comments! Blessings on your ministry!

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