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Rev. Jennifer Nordstrom, First Unitarian Society of Milwaukee

Sometimes people mistake knowledge for wisdom, but wisdom and knowledge are not the same thing. Knowledge is a piece of wisdom, but wisdom is broader and deeper than knowledge alone. Knowledge needs context to become wisdom.

For instance, the knowledge of March in the Midwest is that there will probably be snowstorms and sunny days. People who know this place can extrapolate that knowledge and make wise choices about what to do with winter coats, outdoor events, and expectations of thaw. But this knowledge does not make sense divorced from time and place: it doesn’t apply to March in Florida, or Wisconsin in July.

Wisdom is more than just knowledge plus time and place, however. Wisdom comes from wholeness: it includes beauty and compassion and intuition; the body, the heart, and the spirit; and other people, and animals, and the earth. The Greek word for wisdom is “Sophia,” and in the Book of Proverbs, Sophia is used interchangeably with God. Biblical scholars often use “Sophia” to name the female personification of the wisdom of God. Wisdom is one of the faces of divinity because its context is the whole.

How does Wisdom show up in your context this month? What is wisdom’s time and place? Where is wisdom in your body? How does wisdom make herself known in your life? How does she show up in church?

In this Wisconsin March of the lion and the lamb, I look forward to exploring Wisdom in our community.

With love,


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