For the past month my Bible reading has lead me through Proverbs. I have to say it felt rather rushed. Proverbs is one of those books you could easily take one verse out of it and ponder it for an entire day. I was reading a couple chapters a day! It's full of wisdom from King Solomon, reported to be the wisest man who ever lived.
(This is taken from 1 Kings Chapter 3) One night the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream, "What do you want? Ask and I will give it to you!"
"Give me an understanding heart so that I can govern your people well and know the difference between right and wrong. For who by himself is able to govern this great people of yours?"
The Lord was so pleased with Solomon's request. "I will give you what you asked for! I will give you a wise and understanding heart such as no one else has had or ever will have!"
Solomon could have asked for anything! He could have been selfish in his request, but he was thinking of the people. His greatest desire was to be a king the people could follow. He desired wisdom to rule. That alone blows me away. I think my first thoughts would have been rather selfish. God protect me and my family. Let us live a long life. Provide for all my needs. Make me happy. Keep sickness far from me. Give me whatever I want! The list could go on and on.
As I read my Bible, I like to underline the key verses that speak to me. It makes it really easy to go back and find them on another day. I wish I had a perfect memory that once something goes in, it never goes out. However, that's not the case for most of us. I'm constantly trying to remember what I've heard, and where I've heard it at. That's a big reason why I take notes, and keep them in one place. Wisdom at my fingertips!
I wanted to share with you some of the key verses I highlighted in Proverbs. It's been a really inspiring month. This is a book that you want to read again and again.
Parenting and Children:
"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
"My child, don’t reject the Lord’s discipline, and don’t be upset when he corrects you. For the Lord corrects those he loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12
"Discipline your children while there is hope. Otherwise you will ruin their lives." Proverbs 19:18
"The godly walk with integrity; blessed are their children who follow them." Proverbs 20:7
"Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it." Proverbs 22:6
"Don't fail to discipline your children. They won't die if you spank them. Physical discipline may well save them from death." Proverbs 23:13-14
Hold Your Tongue:
"Anyone who rebukes a mocker will get an insult in return. Anyone who corrects the wicked will get hurt. So don’t bother correcting mockers; they will only hate you. But correct the wise, and they will love you." Proverbs 9:7-8
We have to be very careful with who we share our knowledge. For those who aren't ready for it will be driven away in anger. This can be a very tricky thing, and I believe the only solution is to rely on the Holy Spirit to guide your words. Always spend time in prayer before you confront. Sometimes it's the offense in you that you feel you must defend. Remember God is our defender!
"Too much talk leads to sin. Be sensible and keep your mouth shut."
This one hurts! My mouth is constantly getting me into trouble. I have to weigh my words so carefully. I am certain most of the sin in my life starts with my mouth and ends there.
"Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything." Proverbs 13:3
"People with understanding control their anger; a hot temper shows great foolishness." Proverbs 14:29
"A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare." Proverbs 15:1
"Gentle words are a tree of life; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit." Proverbs 15:4
"The heart of the godly thinks carefully before speaking; the mouth of the wicked overflows with evil words." Proverbs 15:28
"Kind words are like honey— sweet to the soul and healthy for the body." Proverbs 16:24
"The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences." Proverbs 18:21
"A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls." Proverbs 25:28
"Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth— a stranger, not your own lips." Proverbs 27:2
This section of verses are the ones that hit home with me the most. I need to print some of these out and paste them on the walls of my home. I need reminders to hold my tongue, and think before I speak. There is so little you can do to repair the damage of the tongue.
A Godly Woman:
"A beautiful woman who lacks discretion is like a gold ring in a pig’s snout." Proverbs 11:22
"A wise woman builds her home, but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands." Proverbs 14:1
"A quarrelsome wife is as annoying as constant dripping on a rainy day." Proverbs 27:15
"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised." Proverbs 31:30
Thoughts for Life:
"Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it’s in your power to help them." Proverbs 3:27
God has richly blessed us all, and yet reaching out to others is not always our first instinct.
"When the storms of life come, the wicked are whirled away, but the godly have a lasting foundation." Proverbs 11:25
"If you search for good, you will find favor; but if you search for evil, it will find you!" Proverbs 11:27
"Worry weighs a person down; an encouraging word cheers a person up." Proverbs 12:25
"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12
"A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health." Proverbs 15:30
"People may be pure in their own eyes, but the Lord examines their motives. Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed." Proverbs 16:2-3
"We may throw the dice, but the Lord determines how they fall." Proverbs 16:33
"The Lord’s light penetrates the human spirit, exposing every hidden motive." Proverbs 20:27
"An honest answer is like a kiss of friendship." Proverbs 24:26
"A person who promises a gift but doesn’t give it is like clouds and wind that bring no rain." Proverbs 25:14
"As a face is reflected in water, so the heart reflects the real person." Proverbs 27:19
"The wicked run away when no one is chasing them, but the godly are as bold as lions." Proverbs 28:1
"People who conceal their sins will not prosper, but if they confess and turn from them, they will receive mercy." Proverbs 28:13
"Fearing people is a dangerous trap, but trusting the Lord means safety." Proverbs 29:25
Thank you, God, for giving me the ability to speak. Remind me to hold my tongue when necessary, and to speak when it will be an encouragement to those around me. Show me ways where I can improve in my parenting. Make me the wife and mother that you desire me to be. Keep me from speaking evil so that I may not cause pain. Thank you for your unconditional love!