"Hear instruction and be wise, and do not disdain it." NKJV
When I read this verse my first question was is wisdom in fact gained from hearing instruction? That is what the verse is saying, although the NASB translates the word “hear” to “heed” which does seem an important thing to add. Hearing in this case requires follow- through and listening to instruction without acting on it is useless. James 1:22 says “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” When a wise person gives us instruction we should listen to them whether it is hard advice to accept or not. This verse tells us not to disdain instruction. Disdain is the feeling that something is unworthy of one’s consideration or respect. In the next chapter in Proverbs we are told that a wise man will receive instruction and become even wiser.
The difficulty for me now is that I know not all instruction is worth listening too. I have been told many things in my life that are simply untrue, and whether innocently or with malicious intent people have given me poor instruction. If I do hear instruction from someone who I know to be wise -- I should listen to, and then act on their words.
Better even than the words of a wise person, I have the written word of an all-knowing, all-powerful God who has great love for me. That is instruction that is worth listening to, considering, and then heeding.