My morning Bible reading has taken me from the Psalms into the Proverbs. Haven’t been there for a while, I’m sorry to say. Oh, I’ve read verses from time to time, or looked for something that would show me I’m either on the right path or how to return to it. But reading a chapter a day and savoring just that? Not so much. So I’m enjoying the request to remain until given permission to move on, pondering different verses for different situations in life.
Did you know there’s a proverb suitable for nearly any and every occasion? So did I, and yet it feels as though I’ve not read these things before. It’s one of the things I love most about the Word of God: everything is familiar yet new. Rather like sharing a meal prepared in someone else’s kitchen. Your friend might well use the same ingredients you do, yet the delicious results are not the same as yours. Or how about this? Getting to know more about the Divine by enjoying a worship service in a different gathering place and reading new-to-you blogs. You know to the core of your being Daddy God loves you, and you have a wonderful relationship together. You are also confident this other person knows and loves Him too, yet to hear or read of Him from their perspective opens up an entirely different view, almost a panoramic vista you didn’t know existed.
I’m also enjoying one of those new-to-me blogs and am joyfully fascinated and intrigued by what I read. Six years ago, this Quaker preacher wrote something and refused to elaborate because she thought it’d be fun to have people guess what she was referencing: “I don’t know what they are putting in gasoline these days
but it sure doesn’t taste as good as it used to.” Me? I thought she spoke of having to siphon gas if she’d run out of fuel.
That’s how the Proverbs are for me now; offering choice little nuggets sprinkled singly in each chapter, helping me understand how to be a better wife and/or friend, also how to navigate through my days of work and responsibility. I’m going to share a few with you, all from the New International Version 1984, since that’s where I spend these mornings, and would love to hear why you think they’re important to me. Ready?
He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God. He who is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward him for what he has done. ~ Proverbs 14:31; 19:17
Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed. ~ Proverbs 15:22
From the fruit of his mouth a man’s stomach is filled; with the harvest from his lips he is satisfied. ~ Proverbs 18:20
The purposes of a man’s heart are deep waters, but a man of understanding draws them out.
A man’s steps are directed by the LORD. How then can anyone understand his own way? ~ Proverbs 20:5,24
The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases. All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the LORD weighs the heart. ~ Proverbs 21:1-2
Pay attention and listen to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach, for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips. So that your trust may be in the LORD, I teach you today, even you. Have I not written thirty sayings for you, sayings of counsel and knowledge, teaching you true and reliable words, so that you can give sound answers to him who sent you? ~ Proverbs 22:17-21
Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay each person according to what he has done? ~ Proverbs 24:11-12
Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of one’s friend springs from his earnest counsel. ~ Proverbs 27:9
What do you think? Do you want to play that game with me? Would be fun, wouldn’t it? Like going to an improv show. Whether you do or not, allow yourself to be intrigued by the wonder of the One who is especially fond of you (and you and you) and loves fellowshipping with you.
All of Heaven’s best to you and yours,