Proverbs 1 4-1-20

To be an April fool would be to not use this month to grow close to Jesus.

The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel: for gaining wisdom and instruction; for understanding words of insight;

A friend of mine made an interesting observation yesterday. He said that he didn’t realize how much he leaned on the church for his spiritual development. Now he has been challenged to “man up” and be responsible for his own walk with the LORD. I am cheering him on! May we all take this attitude during our April quarantine.

Best verse: 1:23 Repent at my rebuke! Then I will pour out my thoughts to you, I will make known to you my teachings.

When I first learned this verse, it read: If you had responded to my rebuke, I would have poured out my heart to you and made my thoughts known to you. 1984 NIV.

I actually like the first version better because there is hope in that one. What we DON’T want is for the second one to become true of us. The only way I know to keep it from happening is for us to DO IT NOW. Let’s quit waiting until later. Here’s the verse we want to ward off:  32 For the waywardness of the simple will kill them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them…

Waywardness- turned or turning away from what is right or proper; willful; disobedient.

The simple- those who don’t know any better and are prone to disobedience.

Complacency- a feeling of quiet pleasure or security, often while unaware of some potential danger, defect, or the like; self-satisfaction or smug satisfaction with an existing situation, condition, etc.

The fool- knowing what is right, but choosing wrong anyway.

Key words: “Kill,” “destroy.” Is that warning not enough to stimulate us to pick up our Bibles and start reading? To drop to our knees and start praying? To put our lives on His altar and ask Him to use us however He chooses? To worship Him for who He is? Sometimes, in our self-preservation, we miss the obvious, which is His will for our lives. What is His will? Jesus told us in John 6:29, “The work of God [His will] is this: to believe in the one he has sent [Jesus].” But not just to believe, but to follow, to listen to Him and obey His promptings, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home in them.” John 14:23. Isn’t that exciting? Isn’t that worth much more than that extra hour of sleep? That tv program? That video game?

I pray for all of you that you will take the pledge of allegiance to the Lamb and love Him with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. The Israelites loved God, but they also loved a lot of other gods. We love Jesus, but do we also love a bunch of other gods? Pray this prayer with me:

“Lord, search my heart; test me and know all my thoughts. See if there are any offensive ways in me; reveal them to me and I will repent by turning away from them and turning to You. Then lead me in Your way everlasting.” Based on Psalm 139:23-24.

Welcome to His inner circle of friends, which includes all who are willing to spend time with Him and take His commands seriously.

Abba, I pray for all who have gotten to this part of the blog. It usually means that they are seriously considering what I have written. May they be prompted by You to get up in the morning and pray. May they take a journal and/or notecards and make lists of people for which to pray, circumstances about which to pray, and to lift up Your name simply for who You are! May they write their prayers if it keeps them on task; may they speak out loud if it helps them to focus; may they kneel, stand, or pace if it helps them to be “in the moment” with You. May they find someone with which to pray who will help them to be accountable–if anything, to pray! I know I need these things in my life–and have used all of them at one time or another. I want to be known as Your friend, O LORD. May I spend as much time as I can talking to You, thinking about things I read, practicing being You to others, and looking for opportunities to witness. Amen.

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