Faith & Family Business

The longevity of wisdom in the family business (Proverbs 8:22-23)

My second Faith & Family Business series considers the book of Proverbs. Though written thousands of years ago, these proverbs still have a timeliness and power today. My aim is to consider these maxims in the context of our current experience of living and working with family members. Thanks for your feedback and sharing this post with others.

Beginning midway through chapter 8 of Proverbs, several verses speak to the longevity and enduring nature of wisdom. Here are two of them, in which Wisdom is speaking in the first person:

“The LORD possessed me at the beginning of his work, the first of his acts of old. Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth.” (Prov. 8:22-23)

This ancient nature of wisdom can be comforting when we consider that every day, each one of us has some new kind of experience. Interaction with neighbors, family, customers or co-workers, events, accidents, travels — each new day in our life is slightly (or significantly) different than the last. But age-old Wisdom has seen it all.

The family business offers an incredibly rich setting for the discovery, compilation, and recollection of wisdom. I’m reminded of the memoirs my grandfather wrote to my brother and me based on his experience in farming and ranching in a rural community. The wisdom he offered came not only from his experience in the first half of the twentieth century, but also from wisdom passed down to him by others – wisdom gleaned from the 1800’s and before. A long time ago, but a short time when considering God’s wisdom in Proverbs!

What nuggets of wisdom have been passed down in your family or family business? What advice or lessons might you add to your family’s store of wisdom?