Want to start from the beginning of the Proverbs Study? Find the full study HERE.
I don’t know if you have ever heard of the Instagram account called, “Whoa, wait. Walmart?” but it is dedicated to pulling out the gems that Walmart has to offer and gives you the pure shock of finding such quality items. Well, sometimes I feel like we treat the bible like ‘Whoa, wait. Walmart?’.
Some of us think, “Yes, it is God’s Word and yes, it is great, but is there anything in there that really applies to my life? How could something so old actually speak to where I am at right now?” If you have ever thought those things before, I would argue that it may just be a lack of reading the Bible to know the gems that are in it. Maybe it is kind of like your idea of Walmart that has stopped you from going and buying some solid clothing options, because you just didn’t think anything was current enough for you to thrive in. I have a feeling if you just read the Bible you will be saying, “Whoa, wait. THE BIBLE?”
Proverbs 15 speaks to us today better than any influencer could. Starting off in verse one it says, “Respond gently when you are confronted, and you will defuse the rage of another. Responding with sharp, cutting words will only make it worse.” (15:1)
We all know things in the world have been wild lately. It has been hard and sad and brought up the need for conversations that we need to have and have needed to have for a really long time. Many of us are seeking what and how to communicate.
In times like these it is so easy to want to get angry and snap back at people that have different opinions. It has left many of us questioning what to say and how to say things…but did we ever think that even in a time like this the Bible would have such great advice on how to handle conflict? That if we speak gently to one another we might could get somewhere instead of making it worse?
It goes on to say in verse four, “When you speak healing words, you offer others fruit from the tree of life. But unhealthy words do nothing but crush their hopes.” (15:4)
If we want to grow a harvest for the next generation, we have to speak healing words.
The next four verses I placed back to back because Solomon repeated himself several times, so this message must be really important for obtaining wisdom.
- You are stupid to mock the instruction of a father, but welcoming correction will make you brilliant. (15:5)
- Your plans will fall apart right in front of you if you fail to get good advice. But if you first seek out multiple counselors. You’ll watch your plans succeed. (15:22)
- Accepting constructive criticism opens your heart to the path of life, making you right at home among the wise. (15:31)
- Refusing constructive criticism shows you have no interest in improving your life, for revelation – insight only comes as you accept correction and the wisdom that it brings. Proverbs (15:32)
Do I hear anyone saying ‘WHOA, WAIT. THE BIBLE?’
Have you ever been told something you really didn’t want to hear, but you needed to hear? If you accepted that advice then you are WISE! That may seem crazy to you because that moment probably made you feel stupid, but it is in those moments in life where we take giant leaps towards wisdom. Having different generations in our life is such a huge blessing and value that we need to realize! “Why Sadie? They are old and don’t get it!” No, they are wise and have lived through it! Let people speak into your life who are older and wiser, because odds are, they fell learning and want to teach you how to avoid the fall.
I want to encourage you in this time to take from what we are learning and use your words to make the world a better place. Allow ones who know more to speak into your life. We have to be willing to be the change we desire to see. In verse 19 it says to bluntly, “Nothing seems to work right for the lazy man…” (15:19) Do not be lazy in the midst of a history making year. This life is the only one we’ve got so rather you are happy about being a part of 2020 or not. You are here so be a part of the hope that is coming!
“The senseless fool treats life like a joke, but the one with living- understanding makes good choices.” (15:21) Make good choices and the world will be blessed by it. Your life is not a joke – it is a miracle and full of purpose that the world needs.
I want to finish with verse 11, “Even hell itself holds no secrets from the Lord God, for all is exposed before his eyes, and so much more the heart of every human being.”(15:11)
Why do I put this in here, friends? Because I want you to know that there is grace for not being the perfect leader, the perfect friend, having the perfect words, or being the perfect person. Just because you mess up do not stop trying. God knows your heart, and nothing is a secret to Him. His mercy triumphs over judgment. Don’t just do this life for Him – Do this life with Him. Let Him teach you.