Whenever I think of Proverbs, I think of rich truth. Solomon, the wisest man to live, desired to leave a written legacy of wisdom to his son. What a privilege that we are still reading it today as God preserved this wisdom as His written Word! So let’s look over the chapters we read this week:
Chapter 13 covers a variety of topics. From laziness to lying tongues, from poverty to leaving an inheritance for your children, each verse sheds instant light on truth. The verse that seemed to summarize this chapter for me:
The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, that one may turn away from the snares of death. Proverbs 13:14
Which verse summarized or highlighted this chapter for you?
Ok, you might laugh. But this verse was so appropriate for Saturday. Our family had quite a few things going on. And on Valentine’s Day, of all days, I was focused on the urgent cleaning that needed to be done. Sometimes that cleaning sense of urgency makes me think that our family needs to simplify, but when you have as many bodies in a house as we do, it’s really not so much the amount of “stuff” but the number of people who have any amount of stuff.
Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean, but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox. Proverbs 14:4
I’m guessing you get the analogy. No blessings in the form of children=no mess to clean up. Perspective for cleaning day.
Many verses in Proverbs focus on seeking wisdom and controlling the tongue, but chapter 15 centers on these topics. One of my favorite verses:
To make an apt answer is a joy to a man, and a word in season, how good it is! Proverbs 15:23
Many verses discuss the importance of watching your words and the speed at which they fly out, but the flip side of that is not only holding your tongue, but learning to use empowering words to others. This is something I feel that I’m constantly working on. Perhaps you too?
Everywhere we look in today’s culture and society, the center is self. “Have it your way.” “I want it my way.” Proverbs 16 helps us grasp the difference between man’s way and God’s way. After we see the contrast between the two, I believe Solomon is pointing us toward understanding that if we simply begin with God’s way, we’ll encounter fewer problems in life. The following verse summed up this point for me:
The heart of man plans his way, but the LORD establishes his steps. Proverbs 16:9
How would you explain this verse?
There’s a pivotal word in this verse: “when.” The moment of “when” holds the critical decision. Am I going to let it fly or filter with love? I must have read this verse ten times on Tuesday. I can hear Solomon saying to his son :”It really doesn’t take much to convince people you are smart. Just keep your mouth closed.”
In chapter 18, I believe the author is reinforcing the foundation he set in chapter 17. So much of the focus is on truly using our words in a wise manner. Something you may not know about me: I consider myself a foodie. If I wasn’t a Christian blogger chic, maybe I’d be a food critic. Who knows? But the point of explaining that to you is that verse 8 of this chapter made me think:
The words of a whisperer are like delicious morsels; they go down into the inner parts of the body. Proverbs 18:8
Everyone likes to eat good food, right? So if we think of our words as food:
Would you rather have a day old cheeseburger that’s been sitting on the counter or beautifully prepared filet mignon?
Would you rather eat a fresh chopped salad or wilted iceberg lettuce leaf?
Would you rather drink brewed coffee or instant?
And we can’t even go near the chocolate department or I’ll go overboard.
Sometimes “discipline” is considered a bad word. But the art of being disciplined is the focus of this chapter. One of the most noticeable characteristics of a disciplined person is? They listen well.
Listening is an art, a skill and a science. I believe that listening is an art because it is an expression of what is beautiful. It’s also a skill because it takes practice to do it well. And it surely is a science because through listening, you acquire knowledge using observation and interpretation.
Don’t forget the 7up prayer challenge this weekend! My kiddos expressed that they want to be involved; so while I’m shopping today, I have to look for a 12 pack of 7 up. Remember to use the hashtag #7upprayer .
Sorry for the post getting up late; internet was down here last night. Rumor has it that it froze. ha.
Can’t wait to hear from you this week! What did you learn?
Have a great weekend!!