This is handy, because it seems like anywhere I turn, someone is encouraging me to read to my child: the doctor, the pre-school teachers, the grandmas (who were/are school teachers), websites, bloggers, etc. I'll take all the positive reinforcement I can get.
Reading promotes the bond between reader and hearer, encourages literacy, and stimulates the brain in unique ways. Reading expands our experiences. Reading gives us a frame of reference. Reading is exciting and interactive. And the bonus is that good stories are really enjoyable--even when they're written for a four year old.
And, I hope for my boys that reading serves as a precursor to knowledge, and that knowledge will pave the way to wisdom.
It's funny thinking about the wisdom of a toddler and preschooler. It might come in the form of a fear of bees, knowing that bees sting, and knowing that they want to avoid the pain a sting would bring. It might come in the form of a "sweet face," knowing that sweetness generally melts their parents into a buttery mess of saying okay to whatever question is accompanied by such a face.
It's a little tricky thinking about the wisdom of parents. What form does it take? Are the wise the ones who read the most books? Are the wise the ones who keep the most rigorous schedule? Are the wise the ones who research the best school for their child?
Nope. None of those, according to God. It seems as though the wisest ones are the ones who are humble about their own wisdom, and dependent on God for his.
But true wisdom and power are found in God;
counsel and understanding are his. Job 12:13
The fear of the Lord is true wisdom;
to forsake evil is real understanding. Job 28:28
Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead,
fear the Lord and turn away from evil. Proverbs 3:7
Perhaps the best way that we can instill wisdom in the children God has given us is not to emphasize how smart they are or how many books they like to read in one sitting, but to help them understand the massiveness of God's wisdom compared to the tinniness of the things they know.
I'm learning to be okay with not being all that wise. It's a work in progress. As I journey, I take great comfort in knowing that I have unsearchable storehouses of wisdom on my team.
If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you.
He will not rebuke you for asking. James 1:5