Today I read Proverbs 1. I have always liked the book of Proverbs, it always seems to contain snippets of good advice. In the first chapter I read advice warning me away from organized crime, from disregarding the counsel of the wise and an admonition to listen to our parents. But what stood out the most to me was the phrase "fools despise wisdom and instruction". I have seen, so many times in my life, where someone should have listened and just be quite to what the other person has to say. There would be so much less heartache if we stop and take the time to listen. How many times do you see someone trying to put together some piece of furniture or do an activity that came with instructions and they just ignore the instructions? It might turn out alright, but why would someone blatantly ignore the wisdom/instructions of those who designed the item in question? Pride is the answer, pride is the answer to most of the ridiculous things that happen in our world.
King Benjamin teaches us in the Book of Mormon that the natural man is proud and needs to humble himself to become closer to Heavenly Father. Very few people actually like someone that has too much pride. Generally speaking we will overlook it for a time, but there eventually comes a point where we snap and can't handle it anymore. In my job of customer service I meet people who have an inflated opinion of themselves almost daily. It can be a challenge when I have to tell them that their...unrealistic demands will not be met and what I can do instead. They behave very childish, which is different than childlike as we are encouraged to be by King Benjamin. Such people, as King Solomon says in this Proverb, despise instruction and set aside wisdom to follow their own limited, and often times, flawed knowledge. It is sad really and I would pity such people more if they weren't so incredibly frustrating and annoying. But that is my challenge to overcome for sure. Each of us acts the fool as King Solomon described from time to time, the key is to not become that way all of the time. Little by little we will progress and become better men and women. And that should be our goal. Until tomorrow.