RSS

Category Archives: Proverbs

Proverbs 15:22

Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisers bring success.
Proverbs 15:22

Dear God, this is a great reminder for me during board meeting week. I have two committee meetings today and will have a board meeting in the morning. This is especially appropriate since we are finalizing to 2020 budget. There are going to be a lot of thoughts and ideas over the next couple of days and there will be a lot to sift through.

My problem tends to be that I tend to lean more conservative and controlled. I like to build something that will kind of run on its own and just have to be maintained and tinkered with rather than look at pushing out and breaking through the edges of the envelope. I suppose that push/pull will always be there with any organization. I just need to learn to open my heart and mind, and then listen for your still, small voice to guide me.

Father, give me great discernment today. Give it to all of us. Help me to embrace the ideas brought to the table and celebrate the fact that so many are interested in the work we do. Help me to also be a part of bringing your joy to all of those involved through their participation in loving our clients through our work.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 22, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 1:8-9

My child, listen when your father corrects you. Don’t neglect your mother’s instruction. What you learn from them will crown you with grace and be a chain of honor around your neck.
Proverbs 1:8-9

Dear God, I really hope I did right by my kids. I hope I made a difference. I think a lot of parents have doubts and regrets after their children are grown. I certainly have mine. I would hate to have let them (or you) down in this area.

I wonder what Solomon felt like he learned from Bathsheba and David. My assumption would be that he didn’t get a lot from David and his mother was more of the day to day presence. David was probably an example from afar as opposed to a direct instructor. Then I wonder what kind of father Solomon was. We don’t get much here except that the son who succeeded him was cruel. Huh. I guess it’s easier to give advice and talk the talk than it is to live it and walk the walk.

Father, teach me to still learn from my parents, who are both still living, and to know what my adult children need from me so I can give it to them. I love them so much.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 12, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 19:20

Get all the advice and instruction you can, so you will be wise the rest of your life.
Proverbs 19:20

Dear God, my ego is an interesting thing. I was in a meeting with some board members of the nonprofit where I work and the topic of continuing education for me came up. It was suggested that, at this stage of my career and given our nonprofit’s current state of development, I could use some training so we need to put money into the budget for that. On the one hand, I completely agree. I could use some outside advice to help us through this next phase of development. On the other hand, however, I’ll confess that my ego shouts out at me that I shouldn’t need this and I can figure it out on my own. I really hate that ego part of myself.

I’d love to sit and try to psychoanalyze myself through this, but it’s really pretty simple. It’s pride. It’s ego. It’s making myself my own god instead of heeding Solomon’s advice here: “Get all the advice and instruction you can…”

Father, I’m always praying about me decreasing and you increasing, but then I see how I react to things like this and I’m faced with how far I have to go. I’m sorry. Help me to accept all of the advice and instruction that is from you that I can. I don’t want to just take things from others without being discerning, but I certainly want to be “wise the rest of [my] life.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 10, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 27:1-2

Don’t brag about tomorrow, since you don’t know what the day will bring. Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth—-a stranger, not your own lips.
Proverbs 27:1-2

Dear God, oh, how I struggle with being casual about cool things that are happening to me. An exciting vacation coming up. Some cool new gadget I’ve bought. I’m sure it annoys the heck out of people around me. Not that I’m bragging about how great I am, but o do like to talk about things that are exciting to me.

In terms of leaving it to utter people to talk about me, I also confess to you that I hunger for it. I took a personality test one time and part of the summary said that I’m confident, but I need compliments. I felt like that pretty much nailed me. I told my wife I could translate that to say, “Arrogant, but it needs fed.”

Father, help me to learn to live humbly and play to just an audience of one–you. Thank you for a wife that is patient with me. Thank you for being patient with me. I am grateful.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 4, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 29:24-27

If you assist a thief, you only hurt yourself. You are sworn to tell the truth, but you dare not testify. Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety. Many seek the ruler’s favor, but justice comes from the Lord. The righteous despise the unjust; the wicked despise the godly.
Proverbs 29:24-27

Dear God, I wonder how early on Solomon wrote these things. I would say that it’s safe to say that he probably wouldn’t have thought to say such things later in his life. But I’ve spent enough time talking about the fall of Solomon. Let me focus on what he actually said here.

What kind of safety do you offer. I think a lot of us misinterpret this word in this context. We want to think it means that you will put a hedge of physical or even monetary protection around us.

But I learned a couple of years ago that you don’t work that way. And I suppose if I am the kind of person who is loving you with all of my strength and loving my neighbor as myself then that won’t be my goal. In fact, I’d like to say that I want it for my children–and, to be sure, I have wanted your protection for my children–but I’ve come to learn that you use the struggles in my life to grow me into the man you need me to be and I am learning to trust (there’s that word again) that you are doing the same for my children.

Father, I trust you to make all of this go the way you want it it go. The way you need it to go. I’ve prayed a lot the part of the Lord’s Prayer that says, “Your kingdom come and your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Use me however you need to to make that happen. I will trust you with the results.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 2, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 14:34-35

Godliness makes a nation great, but sin is a disgrace to any people. A king rejoices in wise servants but is angry with those who disgrace him.
Proverbs 14:34-35

Dear God, some day I need to sit down and die a deep dive on Solomon. As I read this proverb, I had two initial thoughts. First, even though we are always told as children that there are things more important than money, that one issue seems to pretty much drive every election (at least the ones I’ve voted in since 1988). The second is I wonder at what point Solomon went off the rails. By the end of his life, he had a serious problem with women and was a cruel king and slave owner. When did he write this proverb? Did he recognize the sin in his life?

Of course, that leads me to myself. Do I recognize the sin in my own life? Do I have the self awareness I need to be able to hear the Holy Spirit when he tries to convict me? Do I recognize what you consider to be sin? Have I become watered down by society? Have I become “tolerant” in a negative way that hurts your kingdom?

Father, give me ears to hear and eyes to see. Help me to learn from Solomon. Granted, it’s not that I’m in a position of wealth and power like he was, but I am just as susceptible to hubris and arrogance. Help me to give the Holy Spirit enough room to really work in my heart and my life.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on July 3, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Proverbs 15:1

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.
Proverbs 15:1

Dear God, I’ve done both, and this is very true. The funny thing about harsh words is that they are so much fun to plan and even fun to execute, but they almost NEVER end up working like I think they will work.

So what is it in me that is being spotted while I plan my harsh words? Why does it feel so good in the moment?

My first mistake is that I’ve usually assumed evil, sinister motives on the other person’s part. Even though I know that nearly everyone thinks their own actions are just and justified, I don’t try to see it from their vantage. I just see the wrong they did to me and I plan my own righteous vindication. As I get older I am better at thinking through this part before pouncing, but I have a long way to go.

The next part is a big deal because it is what Satan uses to divide us. It becomes about my rights. I have a right to X, Y, and or Z, and someone has infringed on my rights. Well, I can take care of that. I’ll just let them have it. What I forget is that I don’t have any rights in your kingdom. That’s not to say that you want me to be a doormat, but you certainly ask me to turn the other cheek if it means furthering your kingdom. If I can be a witness to someone through humility and approaching them in love instead of self-righteous anger, then I think I’ve probably made you smile.

Father, help me to remember this passage and this lesson. Help me to be one step closer to being your worshipping child today that I was yesterday. And help me to get one step closer tomorrow. It’s not about how clever I am, or how much I can take another person down. It’s about how much I can do to lead them into your presence, and I will never do that while tearing them down.

In Jesus’s name I pray,

Amen

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on June 3, 2019 in Proverbs

 

Tags: , , ,