A proverb a day keeps apathy away…

Come, Holy Spirit, that I may hear the words of the Lord and accomplish your good purpose for my life.

Today, I will be discussing Proverbs 29, 30, and 31.  The second verse of Proverbs 29 is one worth a closer look.  “When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice.”

One of the characteristics of God is righteousness.  When we pray to Jehovah-Tsidkenu we are praying to God, our Father, who is righteous.  None of us can claim righteousness for ourselves except through the blood of Jesus Christ.  When Jesus gave His life to purchase our salvation, then he imputed His righteousness onto us.  We went from being on the wrong side of the canyon carved out by sin, to spanning the gulf by way of the cross, and were made righteous, that is we attained right standing with God our Father.  When we live a righteous life, we live with integrity.  Integrity is who you are when no one is watching.

While righteousness can only be attained through Jesus, I believe integrity is a communicable disease.  When we live a life of integrity, others will take notice.  The world can be changed through one righteous act at a time.  Praise be to Jehovah-Tsidkenu, the God who is righteous, and to Jesus, who clothes us in His righteousness.

Proverbs 29 goes on to talk about self-control.  Speaking as one whose foot is perpetually in her mouth, I will tell you self-control for me is an ongoing battle.  But when I start my day asking that God be in control of my words, my actions, my responses to others, my day goes much smoother.

Proverbs 30 is so full and rich.  As a poet, I love the lyrical quality of the verse.  As a student of the Bible, I am in awe of the wisdom collected here.  Verse 5 gives us the assurance that every word of God proves true; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him.

We have all at some point in our lives been caught in a rainstorm without an umbrella, without a covering, and making a mad dash to the car have been soaked, for who can run faster than the rain?  When wickedness rains down upon us, we have a ready shield, and we will emerge from the storm unscathed.  God is our shield, our refuge in the time of storm, our resting place when all around us is in turmoil.  He covers us with His wings and like a mother hen, He will not leave us or forsake us.

Proverbs 30 goes on to warn of the evils of pride (12-13) and greed (v15) but follows these verses with 18-19 and talks about things too wonderful for the author to understand.  Are there things too wonderful for you to understand?  How about the smell of a newborn baby, the caress of a loving husband, the security a woman feels when her pantry is full, and the faithfulness of a friend.

When we read verses 24-28 we see examples, yet again, of wisdom.  But not only wisdom, we see a picture of community, for one ant alone cannot provide for himself.  It is the community of ants, together, that provide for the needs of all.  As a member of the Christian community, I believe we each should do our part to grow the kingdom of God, and as a member of the greater Little Rock community I believe we should do our part to support the place in which we live.  Helping the poor and the widowed is a Biblical concept which we should never overlook.  I thank God I am part of a community of believers who put their money and their time to work in helping those who cannot help themselves.

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