Tonight I had trouble picking a few verses to highlight in the blog. It seemed like every verse was jumping off the page begging to be expounded upon.
18 Discipline your children while there is hope.
Otherwise you will ruin their lives.
This could be ripped from the modern headlines. Children are undone, on drugs, disrespectful of authority, unable to get along socially, all because they are not disciplined (taught) in the home. The Bible is clear that the role of a parent is so important. Entitlement and refusal to set boundaries while the "modern" wisdom in the end turns to ruin. When I look back over the childhood of my boys I readily can see mistakes that we made as parents...hindsight is 20/20. Yet I do know that Pastor John and I did our best to love them and bring godly discipline (teaching) into their lives. The boys worked each summer in a youth to work program in their teen years. One year my eldest son came home from work each day the first week with tales of another teen in the program getting let go. I asked him what was going on...his reply was revealing. The youths were being let go for two reasons. They didn't listen to instruction and they didn't complete their task. Thankfully our boys didn't share the same fate as their counterparts because they understood the value of instruction and completing their work. Training is not always fun for parent or child but it is necessary to properly grow to maturity. That's not to say there will not be problems as they grow into adulthood...but they will remember their upbringing and come back to it.
8 To acquire wisdom is to love oneself;
people who cherish understanding will prosper.
This verse brings me back to the opening chapters of Proverbs where wisdom cries out to be acknowledged and listen to in our everyday life. Wisdom is more than knowledge...it is the ability to use knowledge correctly. We should never think that our learning is completed. To continue to learn from God through His word, through our experiences, and through godly advice will keep our life on the right path. Today as I remembered a situation I've been praying about for some time...I couldn't help but give God thanks for good outcomes to prayer. Good outcomes sometimes require walking in the wisdom of God in dealing people and events. I thank God that He helped me to listen to Him and walk in wisdom. Which brings me to the next verse on my list.
Responsible for our actions
3 People ruin their lives by their own foolishness
and then are angry at the Lord.
Sometimes we get ourselves into messes that cause pain and hurt. We might be tempted to be angry upset with the Lord. Many times if we are honest we have to admit that we've not listened to the voice of God and we've walked our own way. Actions always have consequences. In the midst of our mess it is easy to think God abandoned us, or didn't lead us or help us as He should have done. Yet if we will be honest we'd admit we've made choices that simply have bad consequences. God's grace is available to help us even in these times. There are other times when we are in the will of God and trouble comes...it is those times that we have to stand firm. Always evaluate....always ask God and be willing to follow His lead from where you are today. Are you reaping consequences because of choices? Don't despair. Start your journey of obedience today...seek wisdom and forsake foolishness...allow God to bring you out. Don't blame Him....obey Him and see the salvation of the Lord.
What choices are you making today? Are they inline with the wisdom of God?
What verse or verses spoke to you from Chapter 19?