• Go to the ant
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 6

    Go to the Ant – Proverbs 6

    I am not very good at planning ahead. While I am great at outlining and presenting information, I tend to be very seat-of-the-pants when it comes to getting things done. I admit it. I am easily distracted, poor at prioritizing, and terrible at follow through. It is a great mystery to me how I am even able to earn a living sometimes. So, I really need to take the proverbial advice here and learn from the ant. Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise. It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.…

  • continuous effort
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 10

    Diligent Hands – Proverbs 10

    “Lazy hands make a man poor, but diligent hands bring wealth.” – Proverbs 10:4 We all know what it means to be lazy. We’ve all known lazy people, who would do anything to get out of doing work, and, I daresay, we have all had times when we have been lazy ourselves. But diligent is a little trickier to define and to put into practice. Being diligent means “having or showing care and conscientiousness in one’s work or duties.” It is more than just working hard, which I would guess is the opposite of being lazy. Diligence takes a very specific and targeted approach to getting things done. Someone who…

  • wisdom
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 8

    Is Wisdom Hard to Get? – Proverbs 8

    In the eighth chapter of the book of Proverbs, wisdom is personified as a woman standing in the street, calling out to those around her. She offers instruction to anyone willing to take it. She promises great rewards to those who accept what she has to offer. She makes her offer to “all mankind” (Proverbs 8:4). Why then do we sometimes act as if wisdom is so hard to get? We act as though it takes a lifetime of schooling, a slew of hard knocks, and an above average intellect to get wisdom. Reading through the rest of the chapter, though, it seems as if the clearest path to wisdom…

  • Bible
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 5

    Pay Attention! – Proverbs 5

    “Pay attention to my wisdom.” “Turn your ear to my words of insight.” —Proverbs 5:1-2 It is so easy for us to be distracted. We seem to be carried away by every shiny new object that enters our field of vision. The writer here reminds us to pay attention to what is important: wisdom and insight. In this case, he is warning specifically against adultery, but that particular sin is not the only one we need to be on our guard against. We each have our areas where we are vulnerable. Feeding our minds with the wisdom of Proverbs is great protection against whatever might try to entice us. Reading…

  • child choosing direction
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 4

    Does father really know best? – Proverbs 4

    At the beginning of the fourth chapter of Proverbs, the writer repeats his admonition to his son, “Listen to me!” This time around, though, he shares with his reader a sampling of his credentials, “For I too was a son to my father, still tender, and cherished by my mother. Then he taught me.” Here, Dad reminds his son that he has been in the place where his son now stands. Once, he too was a young man making a serious choice, “Should I listen to my father’s advice or should I go my own way?” Can we trust the wisdom of those who have gone before us? Are we…

  • father
    Devotions,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 3

    Listen to your father! – Proverbs 3

    My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity. —Proverbs 3:1-2 In these verses, the son is told that obeying his father’s commands, or taking dad’s advice, will prolong his life many years and bring him peace and prosperity. When you look at the themes that are repeated throughout the book of Proverbs, it is easy to see how this can be true. Proverbs is about being wise, following God, keeping your promises, being careful with your money, and eating and drinking well instead of foolishly. Who could fail to have…

  • Bible
    Devotions,  Encouragement,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 2

    Look for Wisdom: Find God – Proverbs 2

    Much of the book of Proverbs is a reminder of the importance of seeking after wisdom in life. It is basically a book of good advice. But in chapter 2, the writer says that if we look for wisdom, we will also “find the knowledge of God” (Proverbs 2:5). God is described as the source of all wisdom, and “from his mouth come knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:6). God has given us the benefit of his wisdom in the Bible. In it, we have documentation of his dealings with individuals and groups of people called to a very specific task, to stand for or represent God on the earth. As…

  • Crowd
    Devotions,  Encouragement,  Proverbs,  Proverbs 1

    Do Not Go Along with the Crowd – Proverbs 1

    The middle part of Proverbs Chapter One is a warning to stay away from troublemakers. Now you would think that this would be obvious, but every generation, and really every one of us, has to learn this lesson. Hopefully we won’t have to learn it the hard way. The writer says of those who cause trouble, “Do not go along with them, do not set foot in their paths” (Proverbs 1:15). This is very similar to the first Psalm which warns us not to “walk… with the wicked” (Psalms 1:1). So, what kind of trouble are these troublemakers causing here in this first chapter of Proverbs? They want to “lie…