Let’s look at arrested intellectual development. Sometimes we use verses like ‘God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put shame to the wise’ (1 Corinthians 1:27 NKJV) as excuses for not developing our minds and growing intellectually. God said, ‘My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.’ (Hosea 4:6 KJV)
A sense of fulfilment accompanies intellectual growth—one that doesn’t come any other way. When you know you’re growing in knowledge and understanding, you become less vulnerable to criticism, neglect, and slights. Your sense of worth is no longer tied to other people’s approval because you measure yourself by a different standard—personal growth!
The writer of Proverbs says, ‘The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.’ (Proverbs 18:15 NKJV) ‘The hearing ear and the seeing eye, the Lord has made them both.’ (Proverbs 20:12 NKJV)
Notice, you learn by listening and observing! And we’re not talking about hours spent watching television that dulls your brain and stunts your powers of conversation. The Bible says, ‘As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend.’ (Proverbs 27:17 NLT) To grow and become sharp, you need people in your life who sharpen you. Three key activities in determining your future are
(a) the time you spend with God;
(b) the relationships you form; and
(c) the books you read.
And the book you should spend the most time reading is your Bible. Just one more thought: any time you’re reading and get a good thought, or experience an ‘aha’ moment, write it down—otherwise you’ll lose it.