“A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9 NKJV
Oh how we learn, ever so quickly that our way is NOT the Lord’s way! We plan and figure and commit to things and we do our best to obey the Lord. When we fail we grant ourselves the same grace the Lord grants us as He corrects our path and puts things back in order. BUT… what if He doesn’t?
Dear Heavenly Father – As always, please open eye to see and our ears to hear what you are saying! Lord – open our understanding that we may know you. Please do not let us miss out on what you want and need from us today. And please keep us and bless us and shine your face upon us and pour out grace over us and give us peace! Thank you! – In Jesus name we pray, Amen
Today’s reading is from the book of Proverbs, chapters 16-18 (embedded below the image below for your convenience). Wisdom. Tonight I was asked which my favorite wisdom book was. I quickly said it wasn’t proverbs. Proverbs is full of blatant and directly spoken wisdom. The 5 wisdom books are: Job, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Psalms, and Song of Solomon. So then the depth of understanding which can come from Job is glorious and Psalms are full of a meaty wisdom – one of them might be my favorite! Although the binary conflicts set up in Ecclesiastes set in negative tone in order to make their point in an opposite light is fun. More fun than Proverbs. I don’t know why, but it seems more cliché in sayings and more misunderstood in reference to purpose.
I do suppose, though, that if I spent more time memorizing it, I might not be in the situation I am in this week. I have every moment over booked with things I must do and then I committed to a week of prayer and fasting – at church every evening. I was not very wise.
I have already been struggling with my schedule because a friend asked me for help and I said yes and it has proven to be more than I am able to do. So I asked God to release me and help me get out of it without hurting my friend’s feelings. (And there is other reason’s as well that I do not want to be there.) But God is not correcting it.
I tried talking with my friend and she cried – so I haven’t tried again.
There are certain things, as we read in today’s passage, that we are most definitely responsible for and we must do ourselves and other things the Lord does. How do we know which plans are ours and which are the Lords?! Therefore which things do we need to take care of and which things do we need God to release us from?
The truth is the harvest is great, there is so much work to do, but there are not enough laborers.
Pray for me this week. Pray for me.
Do you already have a relationship with a powerful God who cares about your every need because He loves you? Did you know my God can communicate with you and protect you – He has a plan for you to prosper if you just submit to His will and let His plan play out in your life!!! God wants a relationship with you and has already made a plan for your life. He loves you so much He sent His son to this world, to die as a sacrifice for your sins and rise from death with victory over sin and the ability to have a personal relationship with you.
“9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans 10:9-10 NIV
Here is a prayer for you to pray:
Jesus, I believe you are the way, the truth, the life, and the only way to the Father. I believe you are the son of God, you came to Earth and lived. That you died on the cross as a sacrifice for my sins, and rose again so that I may be saved from my sins and be able to get to know you. I declare: Jesus, you are Lord!
Therefore, I confess that I am a sinner and I ask that you forgive me of my sins and come into my life. Help me to turn away from my sins and transform me into what you have lovingly created me to be. Help me through a real personal relationship grow and accept your will for my life – that I may live in your blessings. Please walk with me, and talk with me – I accept a relationship with you and with our Father God, through you. In the name of Jesus I pray ~ Amen
MEMORY WORK: Mark 16:17-18 – This month is month two of the two for one special!!!
NKJV – “And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
NAS – “These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not harm them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
ESV – “And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents with their hands; and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
NLT – “These miraculous signs will accompany those who believe: They will cast out demons in my name, and they will speak in new languages. They will be able to handle snakes with safety, and if they drink anything poisonous, it won’t hurt them. They will be able to place their hands on the sick, and they will be healed.”
NIV – “And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.”
Thank you for reading.
May the God of peace keep you and bless you. May you stay focused on Christ and covered in grace.
Maranatha ~ Come Lord Jesus!
BIBLE READING: Proverbs 16-18 NKJV
Wisdom Is Better Than Gold
16 The preparations[a] of the heart belong to man,
But the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.
2 All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes,
But the Lord weighs the spirits.
3 Commit[b] your works to the Lord,
And your thoughts will be established.
4 The Lord has made all for Himself,
Yes, even the wicked for the day of [c]doom.
5 Everyone proud in heart is an abomination to the Lord;
Though they join [d]forces, none will go unpunished.
6 In mercy and truth
Atonement is provided for iniquity;
And by the fear of the Lord one departs from evil.
7 When a man’s ways please the Lord,
He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.
8 Better is a little with righteousness,
Than vast revenues without justice.
9 A man’s heart plans his way,
But the Lord directs his steps.
10 Divination is on the lips of the king;
His mouth must not transgress in judgment.
11 Honest weights and scales are the Lord’s;
All the weights in the bag are His [e]work.
12 It is an abomination for kings to commit wickedness,
For a throne is established by righteousness.
13 Righteous lips are the delight of kings,
And they love him who speaks what is right.
14 As messengers of death is the king’s wrath,
But a wise man will appease it.
15 In the light of the king’s face is life,
And his favor is like a cloud of the latter rain.
16 How much better to get wisdom than gold!
And to get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.
17 The highway of the upright is to depart from evil;
He who keeps his way preserves his soul.
20 He who heeds the word wisely will find good,
And whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he.
21 The wise in heart will be called prudent,
And sweetness of the lips increases learning.
22 Understanding is a wellspring of life to him who has it.
But the correction of fools is folly.
23 The heart of the wise teaches his mouth,
And adds learning to his lips.
24 Pleasant words are like a honeycomb,
Sweetness to the soul and health to the bones.
25 There is a way that seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.
26 The person who labors, labors for himself,
For his hungry mouth drives him on.
27 [h]An ungodly man digs up evil,
And it is on his lips like a burning fire.
28 A perverse man sows strife,
And a whisperer separates the best of friends.
29 A violent man entices his neighbor,
And leads him in a way that is not good.
30 He winks his eye to devise perverse things;
He [i]purses his lips and brings about evil.
31 The silver-haired head is a crown of glory,
If it is found in the way of righteousness.
32 He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
And he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.
33 The lot is cast into the lap,
But its every decision is from the Lord.
The Lord Tests Hearts
17 Better is a dry morsel with quietness,
Than a house full of [j]feasting with strife.
2 A wise servant will rule over a son who causes shame,
And will share an inheritance among the brothers.
3 The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold,
But the Lord tests the hearts.
4 An evildoer gives heed to false lips;
A liar listens eagerly to a [k]spiteful tongue.
5 He who mocks the poor reproaches his Maker;
He who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.
6 Children’s children are the crown of old men,
And the glory of children is their father.
7 Excellent speech is not becoming to a fool,
Much less lying lips to a prince.
8 A present is a precious stone in the eyes of its possessor;
Wherever he turns, he prospers.
9 He who covers a transgression seeks love,
But he who repeats a matter separates friends.
10 Rebuke is more effective for a wise man
Than a hundred blows on a fool.
11 An evil man seeks only rebellion;
Therefore a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 Let a man meet a bear robbed of her cubs,
Rather than a fool in his folly.
13 Whoever rewards evil for good,
Evil will not depart from his house.
14 The beginning of strife is like releasing water;
Therefore stop contention before a quarrel starts.
15 He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just,
Both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord.
16 Why is there in the hand of a fool the purchase price of wisdom,
Since he has no heart for it?
17 A friend loves at all times,
And a brother is born for adversity.
19 He who loves transgression loves strife,
And he who exalts his gate seeks destruction.
20 He who has a [o]deceitful heart finds no good,
And he who has a perverse tongue falls into evil.
21 He who begets a scoffer does so to his sorrow,
And the father of a fool has no joy.
22 A merry heart [p]does good, like medicine,
But a broken spirit dries the bones.
23 A wicked man accepts a bribe [q]behind the back
To pervert the ways of justice.
24 Wisdom is in the sight of him who has understanding,
But the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.
25 A foolish son is a grief to his father,
And bitterness to her who bore him.
26 Also, to punish the righteous is not good,
Nor to strike princes for their uprightness.
27 He who has knowledge spares his words,
And a man of understanding is of a calm spirit.
28 Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace;
When he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive.
The Name of the Lord Is a Strong Tower
18 A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire;
He rages against all [r]wise judgment.
2 A fool has no delight in understanding,
But in expressing his own heart.
3 When the wicked comes, contempt comes also;
And with dishonor comes reproach.
4 The words of a man’s mouth are deep waters;
The wellspring of wisdom is a flowing brook.
5 It is not good to show partiality to the wicked,
Or to overthrow the righteous in judgment.
6 A fool’s lips enter into contention,
And his mouth calls for blows.
7 A fool’s mouth is his destruction,
And his lips are the snare of his soul.
8 The words of a [s]talebearer are like [t]tasty trifles,
And they go down into the [u]inmost body.
9 He who is slothful in his work
Is a brother to him who is a great destroyer.
10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are [v]safe.
11 The rich man’s wealth is his strong city,
And like a high wall in his own esteem.
12 Before destruction the heart of a man is haughty,
And before honor is humility.
13 He who answers a matter before he hears it,
It is folly and shame to him.
14 The spirit of a man will sustain him in sickness,
But who can bear a broken spirit?
15 The heart of the prudent acquires knowledge,
And the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.
16 A man’s gift makes room for him,
And brings him before great men.
17 The first one to plead his cause seems right,
Until his neighbor comes and examines him.
18 Casting lots causes contentions to cease,
And keeps the mighty apart.
19 A brother offended is harder to win than a strong city,
And contentions are like the bars of a castle.
20 A man’s stomach shall be satisfied from the fruit of his mouth;
From the produce of his lips he shall be filled.
21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.
22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing,
And obtains favor from the Lord.
23 The poor man uses entreaties,
But the rich answers roughly.
24 A man who has friends [w]must himself be friendly,
But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
- Proverbs 16:1 plans
- Proverbs 16:3 Lit. Roll
- Proverbs 16:4 Lit. evil
- Proverbs 16:5 Lit. hand to hand
- Proverbs 16:11 concern
- Proverbs 16:18 stumbling
- Proverbs 16:19 plunder
- Proverbs 16:27 Lit. A man of Belial
- Proverbs 16:30 Lit. compresses
- Proverbs 17:1 Or sacrificial meals
- Proverbs 17:4 Lit. destructive
- Proverbs 17:18 Lit. heart
- Proverbs 17:18 Lit. strikes the hands
- Proverbs 17:18 guaranty or collateral
- Proverbs 17:20 crooked
- Proverbs 17:22 Or makes medicine even better
- Proverbs 17:23 Under cover, lit. from the bosom
- Proverbs 18:1 sound wisdom
- Proverbs 18:8 gossip or slanderer
- Proverbs 18:8 A Jewish tradition wounds
- Proverbs 18:8 Lit. rooms of the belly
- Proverbs 18:10 secure, lit. set on high
- Proverbs 18:24 So with Gr. mss., Syr., Tg., Vg.; MT may come to ruin