I recently read a devotional that talked about how a gazelle in Africa has to wake up every morning and remember that it has to run faster than a lion that wakes up every morning thinking how hungry it is and is going to look for a gazelle that is not running fast enough. Just like the gazelle, every morning when we wake up there is a lion that is just waiting for us to get lazy and complacent before it pounces and devours us. 1 Peter 5:8 tells us “the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour”. We cannot be lazy about our walk with God! Proverbs 1:7 states that “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” Those who do not listen are referred to as “fools.” Solomon had quite a bit to say to them.
Prov. 13:20 – Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm.
Prov. 13:16 – All who are prudent act with knowledge, but fools expose their folly.
Prov. 12:15 – The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice.
If we were to follow the advice of these verses, our lives would change.
Prove 13:10 – Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. As I thought about the times in my life that were filled with strife, I would have to admit the root of it was pride. Even though the tip of the iceberg was fear, below the surface was pride. That was the fear of losing control and not trusting God to step up. The wisdom came when I sought advice from some godly women. Prov. 13:14 – The teaching of the wise is a fountain of life, turning a person from the snares of death.
Prov. 12:25 – Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up. There is nothing like an encouraging word to change our day. Maybe our circumstances haven’t changed but our spirits have been lifted. Or maybe you’ve been the one to encourage someone who is anxious—you are both blessed! Prov. 12: 14 – From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things, and the work of their hands brings them reward.
Prov. 11:25 – A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed. There are so many ways to be generous. We can be generous with our time, with our money, with our words, and with our actions. There is something unexplainable that happens when we give to others expecting nothing in return. Perhaps you could call that being refreshed!
These are just a few of the many thoughts of Solomon. There is so much rich instruction, advice, and plain common sense on how we should live in these chapters of Proverbs. We would be wise to heed his words. This book gives us “wisdom and discipline” that is timeless.
Heavenly Father, I thank you for the simplicity of these verses. Some are so deeply profound yet some have analogies that reveal your sense of humor. Through Solomon, you have given us both wisdom and ways to discipline ourselves in order to live more abundant lives. Praise you Father for loving us as you do. There is no one like you. In Jesus name I pray. Amen