Thursday, January 31, 2013

Proverbs Chapter 31

Recently in both our Mom's and Women's study groups we went through a study entitled: Unglued: Making wise choices in the midst of raw emotions. The study was led by a woman named Lysa Terkeurst. Lysa is the president of Proverbs 31 Ministries which seeks to help women become more like the wise woman described in Proverbs chapter 31. Of all the desirable characteristics listed, the most important one is found in the second-to-last verse:  a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.  Doing what God has called us to do - whether it be as husband or wife or single person - must start with fear, love and trust in God. And that foundation is a gift given by God.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Proverbs Chapter 30

Daily Bread

In my Bible I have brackets drawn around verses 7-9 (the result of a previous reading of the chapter) with this note written in pen:  "Great Wisdom."

Here are the verses:

Two things I ask of you, O Lord; do not refuse me before I die:

1) Keep falsehood and lies far from me;

2) give me neither poverty nor riches,
        but give me only my daily bread.

       Otherwise I may have too much and disown you
           and say, "Who is the Lord?"
       Or I may become poor and steal and so dishonor the name of my God.

To which I must repeat:  "Great Wisdom."

Please leave a comment about the verse(s) that stood out for you from this chapter.

God bless your reading,
Pastor David

p.s. I added the numbers, they are not in the original text.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Proverbs 29

It seems that a lot of attention is being paid - and rightly so - to those who lead our country. It's important to keep track of what our leaders are doing, because of this principle that shows up over and over again in the Bible:

        "As go the leaders... so go the people."

For example, if the leader seeks God, the people will tend to also seek God. If the leader is 'godless', the people will tend to become that way as well.

The proverb from chapter 29 that I chose for today says basically the same:

"If a ruler listens to lies, all his officials become wicked."

The officials take their lead from the one who rules. If he listens to lies, then they will line up to feed him lies, and in the process become nothing but liars.

Take time out right now to pray for our leaders (and for 'the people') to listen to God and not to lies.

God bless your reading,
Pastor David

Monday, January 28, 2013

Proverbs Chapter 28

Almost every time I read a chapter of Proverbs there is something different that stands out from the last time I read it. Today there were a couple of verses that stood out for me from Chapter 28. Verses 9 and 13:

 If anyone turns a deaf ear to the law,
    even his prayers are detestable.

 He who conceals his sins does not prosper,
    but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.

The first verse gives us a great reason to humble ourselves and confess our sins at the start of our prayers. The second verse reminds us that confessing is, as the old saying goes, "Good for the soul."

Please leave your comments about the verse or verses from Chapter 28 that struck you today.

God bless your reading,

Pastor David

Proverbs Chapter 27

For those of you who started reading Proverbs on the 27th, here's the verse that seemed to hit home for me when I read chapter 27:

He who is full loathes honey,
    but to the hungry even what is bitter tastes sweet.

It seems to me the first part of that verse describes those of us who live in the U.S.  We have so much stuff, (we are so 'full') that we don't even appreciate the "sweet" things God gives us on a daily basis. On the other hand, those people who have so little appreciate the "bitter" things we wouldn't even consider eating.

The season of Lent is just around the corner (Ash Wednesday is February 13). It may be a great time for some kind of 'fasting' that will help us to have a greater appreciation for the abundance God has blessed us with - and maybe to share from that abundance with those who have little.

Please leave a comment about the passage from chapter 27 that stuck out for you.

God bless your reading,
Pastor David

Proverbs - A Chapter A Day

In yesterday's sermon I said that I wanted to challenge each of us to make 2013 the year that we dedicate ourselves to

 "keeping the darkness at bay by doing the small, everyday things the way God wants,"

           - in other words: Using Wisdom in our everyday activities, words and attitudes.

Right in the middle of God's Library (the Bible) is a book that has been called The Book of Everyday Wisdom - the book of Proverbs.

Proverbs has 31 chapters, so it is perfect for reading one chapter a day each month (at least for 7 of the 12 months).  I invited everyone to read the chapter of Proverbs that corresponds to the day of the month. For example, read Proverbs 27 on January 27th. Read Proverbs 28 on January 28th, etc...

As you read, you will discover that most of the chapters of Proverbs contain many short, one or two verse "wise sayings" designed to help you make godly choices in everyday situations.Since these "proverbs" or "bits of wisdom" were written close to 3000 years ago, there will naturally be some references that we won't understand. (Much like the people 3000 years ago - or even people 30 years ago - would not understand a reference we might make to "Facebooking" or "Googling".) As you read I'd suggest not worrying about those verses that you don't understand, just focus on the vast majority of verses that are self-explanatory.

I also promised to write a blog entry each day to let you know which of the everyday bits of wisdom jumped out at me - and gave the invitation to add a comment about the proverb that 'stuck out' for you.

Let's get reading...

Pastor David