Now, my son, the Lord be with thee; and prosper thou, and build the house of the Lord thy God, as he hath said of thee. Only the Lord give thee wisdom and understanding, and give thee charge concerning Israel, that thou mayest keep the law of the Lord thy God. - I Chronicles 22:11-12
David desperately wanted to build a house for the Lord, but because he was a man of war, the Lord would not allow it. Instead, God bestowed that honor on David's son, Solomon, who was destined to have a reign of peace. David could have been angry or insulted, but instead, he was glad that the task was going to stay in his family. So like all good fathers do, David set about making preparations and advising Solomon on the humongous task that lay ahead of him.
What I found interesting was the part where David said, Only the Lord give thee wisdom and understanding. The reason I find this so intriguing is because of what we know from later in Solomon's story. During his reign, the Lord came to him and asked him to name his desire. Whatever he wanted the Lord was willing to grant him. Solomon could have listed any number of things--wealth, fame, long life, peace and so on, but if you remember, he asked for wisdom and understanding. I had always assumed that he made such a request because he was already wise, but now I'm wondering if it could have been because his father had advised him to. David said, "The Lord give thee wisdom and understanding," so when the Lord asked Solomon what he wanted, Solomon answered in accordance with his father's wishes, thus proving himself worthy of so much more.
Sadly, we live in an age where few children, no matter their age, respect their parents as they should. Parental advice is ignored or discarded, and as a result, people are finding themselves in situations that cause stress and, in some cases, total ruin. If only they had listened to the advice of those who had come before them. If only they had heeded the wisdom of those who had "been there, done that." But no, pride said, "I'll do it my own way." And the result was catastrophic.
I understand that not everyone has Godly parents who can advise them in the ways of life, but the churches are full of precious saints of God who are more than happy to share their wisdom with the next generation. They've learned life's lessons the hard way and, while they are not going to force their advice on us, they are thrilled to share what they've learned along the way. And it could be that, in heeding their direction, we avoid pitfalls that would have otherwise ensnared us.
A treasury of wisdom is available to each of us. We need only ask and listen.