My son, if you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom. (Prov. 2:1–2)

RIGHT OUT OF HIGH SCHOOL, Jim got a job crewing for local homebuilders. He watched, he paid close attention, he learned. With his mechanical mind, the hands-on work cemented the learning. His career path shifted when he left for college, then owned his own business. Years later, he retired, bought a small farm, and helped an architect draw up plans for their retirement house. Many days during the building process, Jim showed up at the house site, thinking through the plans, looking back at his long-ago mentors and all he’d gleaned along the way. As a result, he caught mistakes, found ways to economize without hurting quality. When he moved his bride of forty-five years into the house on the hill, their voices echoed against the hardwood floors. And the voices of all his teachers over the years echoed through the storehouse of his mind, and he was grateful.

It isn’t enough for us to just give mental assent to wisdom, to God’s words or to others’. Rather, we stockpile them and then actually use them, seeking the help we need from the right source. Knowledge doesn’t help us if we don’t apply it to the problems at hand. But when we accept and use that wisdom, it protects, guards, and guides us.

No matter what kind of life we’re building, we want to be able to live in it.

Ask God to reveal what, with His help, you will build into your life today.

Jane Rubietta is the author of the deeper devotions Finding Life, Finding the Messiah, and Finding Your Promise (Wesleyan Publishing House). She also loves life, words, the outdoors, and garden-fresh tomatoes.