Tag Archives: Proverbs 19

Wisdom is Knowing When to Call a Pro

Handymanda Tool Kit
(Photo credit: Earthworm)

Enthusiasm without knowledge is no good;
    haste makes mistakes. Proverbs 19:2 (NLT)

I come from a family of craftsmen. I’m very proud of this tradition. From my great-grandfather who started as a boy making wood dowels in South Holland and ended up running a hardware store in northwest Iowa, to my grandfather who taught shop class, my father who is a more than capable woodworker, and my brothers who make a living as craftsmen in artistic trades. I, however, didn’t fit into the mold. When it comes to home improvement and do-it-yourself projects, I confess my shortcomings. It’s not that I can’t do it. It’s just that I’m admittedly not very good at it. I only have to look at the nugget of King Solomon’s wisdom quoted above to understand why.

When it comes to do-it-yourself projects I don’t have a natural knack for it and I get impatient. I start out with enthusiasm and a gung-ho spirit, but I quickly find myself frustrated and wishing I was doing something else. If I run into an obstacle I push forward in an effort to “git ‘er done” instead of stopping and investigating the best way to proceed. A major mistake and several trips to the hardware store later, I’m even more frustrated and it’s cost me more time and money than anticipated. My return on investment for doing it myself starts to wear perilously thin.

I’ve learned over the years to accept certain truths about myself with humility. There are areas of life in which I am talented and gifted. There are areas of life that I am more than capable. There are areas of life that I am not as capable, and some things in life I should avoid like the plague.

Wisdom is knowing when to do-it-yourself and when to pay a professional.


[An index of all Tom’s chapter-a-day posts covering every book and chapter]

Chapter-a-Day Proverbs 19

WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 22:  Treasury Secretary'...
Image by Getty Images via @daylife

If you help the poor, you are lending to the LORD—
      and he will repay you!
Proverbs 19:17 (NLT)

A month or so ago Wendy made an off-hand comment in the midst of a conversation. I can’t remember what we were talking about, but I remember the short comment she made. “You never regret giving,” was the gist of what she said and it stuck with me for the simple truth of it.

Throughout life there are many crossroad moments when the bills, the debts, and the stack of monthly payments seem overwhelming. The idea of giving a portion of my paycheck away to church, a friend in need, and/or a worthy charity suddenly seems ludicrous.

“My donation’s not much. It won’t really make a difference in the grand scheme of things.”
“I would feel better if I had a little more change in my pocket this month.”
“It’s my money anyway. Why should I give it away?”
“I can’t afford to be generous.”

But, I’m reminded of Wendy’s comment. In the end, I’ve never regretted writing that check or handing over that cash. We are so blessed and the act of giving is a regular reminder that it’s really not my money.  Giving is a way of counting my blessings, being thankful for all that I’ve been freely given, learning to be content, and consistently considering the needs of others rather than only thinking about myself.

Beyond that, I’ve experienced exactly what King Solomon was getting at in the proverb above. God always seems repay financial generosity (and does so with some very interesting examples of compounding spiritual interest).

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