If we were ever asked, what gift or talent, we would want to have in life, what would be the first thing that would come to our mind?
Of course depending on our life situations and circumstances, we would want to have something particular to meet the needs and demands that we face.
For example, some may want to be musically talented; some may want to have the gift of oratory skill; some may want to be gifted in drawing and painting.
But the one humble and yet very useful gift would be that of wisdom. A wise person would live a good and right life and also show others how to live life.
A wise person would take a moment to reflect on things and see the deeper meaning behind them. For a wise person there is no such thing as a small thing; everything has a meaning.
The 1st reading describes how a person yearns for wisdom and "in my prayers I asked outright for wisdom."
One of the fruits of wisdom is to say the right things and ask the right questions.
In the gospel, the chief priests and scribes, with their authority and arrogance challenged Jesus by asking Him: What authority have you for acting like this? Who gave you authority to do these things?
And Jesus, in His wisdom, asked them about the origin of John's baptism, and it was a question that stumped them and their answer "We do not know" exposed their ignorance and foolishness.
If only the chief priests and scribes had prayed for wisdom before asking the questions.
May we also pray for wisdom before speaking or asking questions. Then the Holy Spirit, the Gift of God, will teach us what to say and do.
A prayer for wisdom (Wisdom 9:1-6, 9-11)
O God of my fathers and Lord of mercy,
who have made all things by your word;
and by your wisdom have formed man
to have dominion over the creatures you have made,
and rule the world in holiness and righteousness,
and pronounce judgement in uprightness of soul,
give me the wisdom that sits by your throne,
and do not reject me among your servants.
For I am your slave
and the son of your maidservant,
a man who is weak and short-lived,
with little understanding of judgement and laws;
for even if one is perfect among the sons of men,
yet without the wisdom that comes from you
he will be regarded as nothing.
With you is wisdom, who knows your works
and was present when you made the world,
and who understands what is pleasing in your sight
and what is right according to your commandments.
Send her forth from the holy heavens,
and from the throne of your glory send her,
that she may be with me and toil,
and that I may learn what is pleasing to you;
for she knows and understands all things,
and she will guide me wisely in my actions
and guard me with her glory.