The Gift of Wisdom helps us “to judge and order all things in accordance with divine norms and with a connaturality that flows from loving union with God,” as defined by Fr Jordan Aumann OP.
Bd John Paul II describes the Gift of Wisdom as
…the root of a new awareness, a knowledge permeated by charity, by means of which the soul becomes familiar, so to say, with divine things, and tastes them. St Thomas speaks precisely of “a certain taste of God,” through which the truly wise person is not simply the one who knows the things of God but rather the one who experiences and lives them.
Fr Peter John Cameron OP summarizes this definition in this way: “Wisdom is where Knowledge and experience coexist.”
Fr Tanquerey teaches that the Gift of Wisdom “enables us to discern God and divine things in their ultimate principles, and [gives] us a relish for them.” Following St Thomas, he says that it gives us “a supernatural taste which acts upon the will and enables it to relish divine things as by a sort of natural attraction.” He offers this analogy:
It is like the sunbeam, a ray of light illuminating and delighting the eyes of the soul, and a ray of heat that warms the heart, inflames it with love, and fills it with joy.
It seems to me that the Christians who are most attractive are the ones in whom the Gift of Wisdom is operating. Often their very countenance exudes their authentic communion with God and their love of others, and their humble demeanor is a witness to their confidence and comfort in the Father’s love.
Here are some occasions on which we should engage (or ask for more of) the Gift of Wisdom:
- If you find that you’re still sulking because your parish has been closed
- If you lose your joy easily when things don’t go the way you had hoped
- If, upon returning to your pew immediately after receiving Jesus in Holy Communion, you are easily distracted, unable or unwilling to engage in a fervent, heartfelt thanksgiving
- If you never weep during your personal prayer time
- If your heart never burns within you as you read Sacred Scripture (cf. Luke 24:32)
- If you simply cannot envision your Heavenly Father wrapping his arms around you in a big, manly, affectionate bear hug
- If you lack an abiding peace, joy, confidence
- If you spend too much time dissatisfied, complaining, immersed in negativity
If you can think of other times when we should engage the Gift of Wisdom, please share them with us in the Comment Box.