Proverbs 3 is PACKED, so we are going to focus on just this one chapter this week in our Proverbs study. We can catch up later. If you are just joining the Proverbs study, click here to read Proverbs 1 and 2 from last month. The plan is to go through the book of Proverbs this year together, so make sure you leave comments and let us know what God is speaking into your heart while you are reading.
Let’s get started.
Proverbs 3:5 (TPT): Trust in the Lord completely, And do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, And he will lead you in every decision you make.
You may know this verse from another translation. Here’s how you may have heard this verse: Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and he will make your path straight.
I can hardly read that verse without singing it in my head like we did in Sunday school.
In life, you are going to go through a lot. You may have already gone through a lot. Sadly, life is full of troubles. I depend on this verse in the hard times because it tells you and me this: If (I/you) fully put (my/your) trust in God and not rely on (my/your) own opinions, He will guide (me/you) throughout (my/your) life.
Think about it. Say it over again. You do not have to walk through life blindly. You do not have to walk through life hesitantly. You do not have to walk through life ignorantly. God’s Spirit will guide you to make every yes and every no be more than words. They can be confident answers to life issues. God silences confusion, stress, and anxiety if you just trust in Him. Trusting in God will certainly change the way you walk
Verse 7:Don’t think for a moment that you know it all…
HEYO! I know this verse is speaking to a lot of people. Humility matched with wisdom will take you far in life. I know so many of you do not want to hear this next statement, but it’s true. You will never know it all. Yep, that’s right.Even if you made a 36 on the ACT (which is super cool if you did), there is still more to know in life. Even if you have a master’s degree, if you own a business, if you pastor a church, if you have been in church your whole life and heard “every sermon there is to know,” there is still more to learn. God is the God who was and is and is to come. There is a whole lot of information to know about Him and this universe.
There are so many people who speak into my life: well-known pastors, local pastors, family members, uber drivers, little kids, and really anyone who has life to give can speak to me. I learn a ton from all of them, and hopefully they learn a little from me, too. For all of us, there must be a willingness to learn. I have to be willing to learn from the little kid or the pastor and they have to be willing to learn from me. Being humble and allowing others to teach you is a great character trait to strive for.
Verse 11: My child, when the Lord God speaks to you, Never take his words lightly, And never be upset when he corrects you.
This verse goes so deeply in my heart. I’m pretty sure I heard this a few times from my own parents. Ha! Many times, we choose what we want and don’t want to hear from God. If it is too scary, we close our ears. If it is too crazy, we close our ears. If it would take too much from us, we close our ears. If it convicts us too deeply, we close our ears. I want to encourage you to listen to God’s words and don’t take them lightly. God’s words are always said to make you a better person and your life an easier road. Look around. God is the God of all creation. He knows what’s best and His intentions are the best. Listen and obey. It will take you further than you thought you could go.
Verse 12: For the Father’s discipline comes on from his passionate love and pleasure for you. Even when it seems like his correction is harsh, it’s still better than any father on earth gives to his child.
Verse 11 and 12 tell us that we can be confident that God’s intentions toward us are good. I know you’ve heard your parents tell you they discipline you because they love you. Well, it’s true. Loving someone means wanting the best for them and sometimes that means discipline—not in a mean way, but a loving way in order to help train for a better way to live. Loving parents, like a loving God, discipline from a place of passionate love for their children.
Verse 17: The ways of wisdom are sweet, always drawing you into the place of wholeness.
Here is a good way to discern wisdom from other talk. Ask yourself if what is being said or taught is something that is drawing you into a place of wholeness or making you or someone else feel worthless? If what you are saying or hearing is making you or another person feel worthless, then you need to redirect your talk toward wholeness. As this verse says, wisdom is sweet. Think about that. Wisdom will not direct you to speak unkindly toward another person. It will lead you to wholeness through words that are kind and good.
Verse 21: My child, never drift off course from these two goals for your life: to walk in wisdom and to discover discernment. Don’t ever forget how they empower you.
There is so much talk today about empowerment. Everyone wants to feel empowered. Here is how it is accomplished—through wisdom and discernment. This verse tells us discernment, which is good judgement and decision-making, and wisdom, which leads to discernment, are powerful tools because they EMPOWER us to a better life. Looking at life with foolish eyes and foolish ears will always leave us confused and uncertain about life choices. But, if we use our God-given brain to make wise choices and discernment to make good decisions, we will be empowered to move forward in life.
Verse 22: For they strengthen you inside and out and inspire you to do what’s right; you will be energized and refreshed by the healing they bring.
Now doesn’t that sound nice? Energized and refreshed is always good. The “they” this verse is talking about is wisdom and discernment. Those two things not only empower you, but they strengthen you inside and out, inspire you to do what’s right, give you energy, and refresh you by their healing powers. WOW! That’s a lot of good stuff right there! Have you ever thought that wisdom and discernment can heal? Wisdom brings truth to the lies we are all told each day. Lies others tell us and lies we tell ourselves. When we see an ad with a gorgeous girl with big, beautiful hair, wisdom helps us know that someone has fluffed her hair, touched up her makeup, and then the photo was edited to perfection. Do you see how wisdom and discernment can heal? How that wisdom and discernment bring a freshness to stale thinking?
Verse 23: They give you living hope to guide you, and not one of life’s tests will cause you to stumble.
And the good stuff keeps going! Do you need a guide? Wisdom is your go-to guide. Do you worry about walking blindly through life? Call on wisdom and discernment. Do you think you may not pass one of life’s tests? Wisdom is your teacher.
But, there’s more! These next three verses are the greatest of all to me.
Verse 24-26: You will sleep like a baby, safe and sound—your rest will be sweet and secure. 25 You will not be subject to terror, for it will not terrify you. Nor will the disrespectful be able to push you aside, 26 because God is your confidence in times of crisis, keeping your heart at rest in every situation.
To every anxious heart out there, let this sink in deeply. You will sleep like a baby. We have a new baby in our family and we love watching him sleep. His entire body is relaxed. Good judgement and common sense will give you your rest back. God promises to be your confident trust partner.
Verse 31: Don’t act like those bullies or learn their ways.
In verse 27, the subject changes to wisdom in relationships and basically we’re challenged to do the right thing. Always. Don’t hold grudges, don’t quarrel, don’t act like a bully. Verse 32 tells us the godly walk under a stream of God’s blessings. That’s where I want to be! You probably do, too.
Verse 34: If you walk with the mockers you will learn to mock, but God’s grace and favor flow to the meek.
Let’s look at these two verses closer. They go hand in hand. How many times do we excuse our actions, because we want to fit into the environment around us? This verse exposes the “everyone’s doing it mom” excuse we love to give and puts it in its place, which is not a good place. Peer pressure is real and it is persuasive, so it is important to be cautious about who you let surround you. There are people out there who DO NOT want the best for you. There are people out there who you DO NOT want to be like. There are people out there you DO NOT want to learn from. You have been called to something greater and higher by the grace of God. Listen and look for everything that magnifies THAT calling.
Hopefully you are walking away today a little taller and a little wiser. Xo
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