These are the wise sayings of Solomon, David's son, Isreal's king-
Written down so we'll know how to live well and right,
to understand what life means and where it's going;
A manual for living, for learning what's right and just and fair.
Cry out for wisdom, and beg for understanding.
Search for it like silver, and hunt for it like hidden treasure.
Then you will understand respect for the Lord,
and you will find that you know God.
When was the last time you lost something you really needed to find, like your phone, car keys, or money? Do you remember how desperately you searched for it and how relieved you were when you found it? Just imagine how overjoyed God would be if we searched for Him in His Word like that and find we know Him better.
Don't lose grip on Love and Loyalty.
Tie them around your neck; carve their initials on your heart.
Earn a reputation for living well in God's eyes and the eyes of the people.
As in the days of old, I see the imagery of when a teenager in love carved the initials of his one true love on a tree. I swoon all over again, imagining when Jesus Christ carved His initials on my heart!
Prize wisdom [and exalt her], and she will exalt you;
She will honor you if you embrace her.
She will place on your head a garland of grace;
She will present you with a crown of beauty and glory.
We can envision and treat Wisdom as a best friend. We should greatly desire to spend time with our best friend. We should call upon her as often as we need help. We should cherish her, honor her, and guard her. Wisdom, in turn, being the most wonderful best friend she is, will honor us, protect us, and instruct us. She longs to be close to us. Wisdom has the most incredible gifts for those who call her friend!
Mark well that God doesn't miss a move you make; he's aware of every step you take.
The shadow of your sin will overtake you; you'll find yourself stumbling all over yourself in the dark.
Okay, now, did you start singing that song "Every Breath You Take" by the 80's rock band The Police? I did!
The lyrics are:
Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
I'll be watching you
Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
I'll be watching you
Oh, can't you see
You belong to me
How my poor heart aches
With every step you take
Our God watches us night and day. He never takes His eyes off of us. He wants the same from us, to keep our eyes on Him to keep us from stumbling in the dark. His heart does ache with every misstep we take. He is the light for our path. Come to Him every single day and you can hear Him say, "you belong to me!"
Can a man embrace fire and his clothes not be burned?
Can a man walk on burning coals without scorching his feet?
Everything we do matters. We need to recognize that our day to day actions define our custom of living. These customs are significant to the outcome of our day, our lives, and the lives of those around us. No matter how much our flesh desires and justifies, the thoughts and behaviors we hold on to, support, and practice should not go against what God says in his Word. There are always consequences for our actions. We cannot live the way we desire, going against what God desires, and not be harmed in the end. It is not God who is punishing us. It is us who are punishing us! When we play with the fires of sin, we will get burned.
Follow my advice, my son; always treasure my commands.
Obey my commands and live!
Guard my instructions as you guard your own eyes.
The Lord has given to us a most precious gift which is His commands. We should guard them as we would an overflowing treasure chest. We should protect God’s commands as we protect anything precious to us, such as our eyes are precious. We can protect or shield our eyes by putting on safety goggles or shades. We need to place a shield between the word we have received and the world that seeks to distort it. Our obedience is the shield for the Word’s instructions, protecting them from the world’s distortions. Just as we know, if we allowed outside irritants to enter our eyes, it could affect if our eyes could see clearly. Likewise, we should take every measure to shield or protect the Lord’s instructions and not let outside irritants or cultural influences distort what is true. For example, the Word’s instructions say, "do not steal." So if we allow or justify behaviors, such as stealing, for a “good cause”, we have allowed the instructions to be distorted. Look back at Proverbs 6:30-31 MSG, we find, “Hunger is no excuse for a thief to steal.” Let us guard our eyes and minds against distortions. But, there is good news! God, our Father, knows we need help! The Word tells us: "now that we know what we have-Jesus, the great High Priest with ready access to God-let's not let it slip through our fingers. We don't have a priest who is out of touch with our reality. He's been through weakness and testing, experienced it all-all but the sin. So let's walk right up to him and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help. (Hebrews 4:16 MSG) Love the Word and protect it. Obey the Word and we will live and live well!
I was like a child by his side.
I was happy every day and enjoyed being in his presence.
I enjoyed the whole world.
And I was happy with all its people.
Wisdom has been with God since the very beginning. She is His "ride or die", His 100 from day one! She knows everything about Him. Wisdom was the event coordinator the week the world was created. They had such a good time, they rested all day Saturday to laugh, rejoice, and reminisce about some of the wild creations they had made. If you really want to get to know more about God and what brings Him joy, call Wisdom, she would love to tell you all about Him!
In Chapter 9, we learn that just as Wisdom calls out to us, Folly calls out also. Let's see what each of them has to offer.
Wisdom built her house and furnished it, and she is productive.
Folly sits on her porch and she is restless.
Wisdom made a sacrifice and prepared a feast for us.
Folly stole the meal she sets out.
Wisdom offers bread and wine to be eaten together at the table.
Folly offers plain water and stolen bread to be eaten in secret.
Wisdom sends out invitations and offers gifts to those who come to her.
Folly makes herself a distraction and operates in the deception of her guests.
Wisdom provides correction, instructions, and benefits.
Folly leads to offense, insults, and scorn.
Wisdom promises you life and insight.
Folly promises you death and Hell.
They both call out to those who are naive or lack judgment to come to their house. So as we go about our day, please let us be mindful of whose voice calling out to us that we stop and give our attention to. And at the end of this day, think back, whose house did you visit, Wisdom or Folly?
The wisdom of Solomon:
When wisdom comes to a son, joy comes to a father.
When a son turns from wisdom, a mother grieves.
Solomon's proverbs offer us parents a manual for teaching our children wisdom. At the end of the day, however, we cannot control their or anyone else's decisions. We should rejoice and celebrate with them when they do make wise and godly choices. When our children turn from Wisdom and chose Folly, we will feel hurt or disappointed by those decisions. But if we continue to share with them the wisdom of God's Word, if we show them a life of a lover of God who sometimes fails but never gives up, and if we plant the good seed in them and Holy Spirit waters it, we all will see the fruit of our works. We pray to see lives that glorify God, theirs and ours!
The who seeks good finds delight;
the student of evil becomes evil.
As we go through life, we all become students of something. A student is defined as a person who takes an interest in a particular subject. What are your interests? What are you studying? Life offers many subjects to choose from. If we choose Jesus as our student advisor, He encourages us to pursue subjects that are true, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous, and praiseworthy. At the end of our course, we will experience favor, grace, kindness, and delight. In the same way, if we choose Satan as our student advisor, he encourages us to pursue subjects like sexual immorality, lustful thoughts, pornography, manipulation, hatred, arguments, resentments, selfishness, and addictions. At the end of our course, we will experience oppression, trouble, and all kinds of evil. The efforts we place in learning, studying, and mastering any of these subjects, will be demonstrated in how we live our lives. Take out your student handbook, the Bible, consider your long-term goals, and choose your course wisely!
Better is a man of humble standing who works for himself
than one who plays the great man but lacks bread.
God will give honor and grace to those who turn away from self-righteousness. The Bible also tells us that "God can't stomach arrogance and pretense" (Proverbs 16:5 MSG.) Being prideful is described as highly offensive, disgusting, detestable, and hated by God. God made us who we are and the actions we choose determine how we live our lives. In all circumstances, we should trust Him, be humble by being ourselves, and do what is right. I believe we would have more contentment and joy in our lives if we would just be and do what God has called us to be and do. When we step outside of His calling and live a life of our own pretenses, we will lack the things God has promised us. Those of us who recognize who we are and whose we are will lack nothing!
Wealth quickly gained is quickly wasted-easy come, easy go! But if you gradually gain wealth, you will watch it grow.
For those of you who play dominoes, you may be familiar with the saying, “all money ain’t good money!” A simplified object of the game is to count the little black dots on the dominoes, scoring in multiples of 5 until you reach 150 points first to win. Some call each score “money.” In the process of scoring money, an expert domino player will know when to place the right game piece to stop another player from scoring and will be the first one to call out “domino” to win the round. A greedy and inexperienced player will quickly throw out a game piece when he realizes that it will allow him to score 5 or 10 points. However, getting that score too soon without regards to what else he and the other players have in their hands, may cause him to lose the game. There was not much effort or thought into gaining the money or the score. It is the steady and strategic adding on of points; it is the studying the board to be the one to call out “Domino” that will most likely win him the game. If he places his pieces out there too soon, he may very well “lock-up” the game and lose everything he has in his hand! Be careful not to be like the inexperienced player. Do not go for the wealth in haste. God desires us to live a life steady in Him, heeding to His wisdom and instructions, and being rewarded by our labors. Diligent, honest, and productive labor that will grow and multiply is the way to gain everlasting wealth. Watch it grow!
A calm and undisturbed mind and heart are the life and health of the body,
but envy, jealousy, and wrath are like rottenness of the bones.
Today as we celebrate Valentine’s Day, we must give attention to the heart. The condition of our hearts is most important. The heart holds the treasures of our lives (Matthew 6:21), so let us consider its condition. How has your heart been doing lately? Let us give it a check-up. How has your heart been responding to situations? What are the words from your heart that have come out your mouth? What prompts from your heart have you followed? In all those situations, did your actions manifest peacefulness, relaxation, serenity, and calmness in your life? Or did your reactions give way to restlessness, tensions, worries, and/or agitations? The Bible says to guard your heart above all else for your affections will affect who you are (Proverbs 4:23). When we take our guard down and allow envy, jealousy, and anger to enter our hearts, it will affect our minds, our hearts, and our quality of living. For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks (Matthew 12:34). So, if you find on this day of celebrating love that you are without tranquility, consider your heart. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart brings forth good (Luke 6:45a). What is the best thing for your heart? Jesus! God has provided for us a great prescription, take Jesus into your heart, for “he came that you may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)” (John 10:10 AMPC). Share your heart with Him. Let Jesus be your Valentine today and every day.
The sacrifice of the wicked is hateful and exceedingly offensive to the Lord,
but the prayer of the upright is His delight.
Take a minute to imagine your most favorite person in the whole world. Go ahead, smile! When you think of that person, do thoughts of times you two have spent together or conversations you have had flood your mind? You know, God does that too! He smiles when He thinks of the prayers, which are simply conversations, that He has shared with us. Our honest and genuine prayers are His delight! God desires for us to make Him our favorite person in the whole universe, to trust and believe in Him. According to His Word, God is so smitten with you, " he will take delight in you with gladness. With his love, he will calm all your fears. He will rejoice over you with joyful songs" (Zephaniah 3:17 NLT). God sings over us! Go ahead, smile again! It is amazing how our God, our Father, our Creator, our Wonderful Counselor, our Healer, our Strong Tower, our Redeemer, our Everything loves us so much. Also, it is amazing when we recognize, accept, and act on His love and have a desire to reciprocate it, there is a promise. The promise is fulfilled when we delight ourselves also in the Lord, He shall give us the desires of our hearts (Psalms 37:4 NKJV)! One more time, smile!
Commit your works to the Lord [submit and trust them to Him],
And your plans will succeed [if you respond to His will and guidance].
“It’s about faith.
It’s about trust.
Nothing can come between us."
Never truer words were song by 90’s songstress Sade’ that can be used as an anthem describing how our relationship with God can be. If we trust Him with all our plans, and all our hopes, He will guide us in the direction of success. The Bible professes to us that “a man’s mind plans his way [as he journeys through life], but the Lord directs his steps and establishes them” (Proverbs 16:9). By putting our complete trust in our Heavenly Father to take care of us, we can never be separated from Him. In Romans 8:37-39, God promises us, for those who believe in Jesus Christ, nothing, not things in the present nor things to come, shall separate us from his love. The responsibility is on us to act on faith and trust God at His Word. God does not lie. God declares to us, “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11). Make a commitment to truly trust God with everything and everything God promised you will come true.
A simple, humble life with peace and quiet is far better than an opulent lifestyle with nothing but quarrels and strife at home.
Just imagine when peace in your life was far more valuable than anything else at that time. Just peace and quiet. Sometimes it is these simple things that money cannot buy, food cannot satisfy, and friends cannot esteem us enough. Just peace and quiet. God promises such peace, the peace “which transcends all understanding [that] will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7). We do not have to get filled with what the world offers, and we do not have to let all the troubles of the world overtake our minds, bodies, and souls. Believe Jesus when He exclaims, “in the world, you will have trouble, but take heart! I have overcome the world.” Believe Jesus when He proclaims, “in me you may have peace” (John 16:33). At times, all we need is to sit in the corner of our house, eating a crust of bread without conflict and have what Jesus offers. Just peace and quiet! My prayer for you: “may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:3).
Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
and those who love its use will eat its' fruit.
Perhaps, there has never been a bigger lie uttered than:
Sticks and stones can break my bones
But words will never hurt me!
Words do hurt! Words can leave wounds that can take a person a lifetime to heal from. Words are powerful, for good and for evil. Words used for good can bring life. Since the beginning of time, words are the foundation of life. God spoke everything in this world into existence. In Genesis Chapter 1, God said let there be and so it was, and it was good. Simply powerful. Similarly, words can most definitely be used for evil and death. Satan's most powerful weapon is words. He whispers words of deception into our ears every day, just as he did with Eve in the garden. And like Eve, if we listen to those words, if we consume them into our bodies, it will cause death, which is the separation of the relationship between us and God. Words spoken and believed can strengthen our relationships with God and others or destroy those relationships. Words are essential to life. Words feed us as food does. Proverbs 18:20 MSG also tells us, “words satisfy the mind as much a fruit does the stomach, good talk is a gratifying as a good harvest.” Likewise, “bad talk” reaps a “bad harvest.” The type of seeds we plant with our words will grow and produce fruit. What type of fruit are you producing? Do you taste the consequences of your words? Do others want seconds? Or, do they excuse themselves from your table? “Words kill, words give life, they’re either poison or fruit-you choose” (Proverbs 18:21 TPT).
The reverent worshipful fear of the Lord leads to life,
and he who has it rests satisfied; he cannot be visited with [actual] evil.
If we completely fear God, with fear meaning to love, respect, trust, believe God, we should not fear evil. The love of God is all-consuming and encompassing. If we truly fear God (love, respect, trust, believe Him) we will not let fear bother us. It comes down to “faith over fear.” In any particular situation we face, we must decide will we chose faith or fear. With faith in God, we will not have sleepless nights, we will not have worry and anxiety. With the Lord as our guide, He will give us rest and comfort (Psalm 23). For “who are they that live in holy fear of God? [He] will show them the right path to take” (Psalm 25:12). We are promised life to those of us who worship God and refuse the works of evil. The Bible says, “so give yourselves completely to God. Stand against the devil, and the devil will run from you” (James 4:7 NCV). Let your faith in God satisfy you and there will be no more room for evil!
A slacker will not plow in season,
so at harvest, he looks but finds nothing.
We all want to be blessed. We all are promised to be blessed. But we all don’t do what is necessary to get those blessings. Most promises in the Bible come with action due on our part. If you lack wisdom, you must ask (James 1:5). If you want forgiveness, you must confess your sin (1 John 1:9). If you want rest, come to Jesus (Matthew 11:28). If you want to be blessed in your storehouse and in everything you do, you must listen to and obey the Lord your God’s commands (Deut. 28:8,13). So, if you are not planting seeds now for what fruit you want to reap in the future, don’t be surprised when you have nothing to show for at harvest time. According to Matthew 25:14-30, if you want all the blessings God has planned for you; you must use the talents He has given you to get them. This is not the time to sleep and slumber, it is time to plan and plant! Get up and go get your blessings!
The Lord is more pleased when we do what is right and just
than when we offer him sacrifices.
Do you know what makes God smile? Faithful love and obedience. It is better to obey the Word of God than to sacrifice something that you chose to do or give away. To sacrifice is sometimes good and sometimes necessary, but the true evidence of our love and knowledge of God is found in our living in obedience. When the Israelites turned from righteous living in the past, God our Father makes His request known to them, “I’m after love that lasts, not more religion. I want you to know GOD, not go to more prayer meetings"(Hosea 6:6 MSG)! God asks us to do the same today, to know Him, love Him, and do what is right. He says “stop bringing meaningless offerings! The multitude of your sacrifices-what are they to me" (Isaiah 1:13, 11 NIV)? God wants a relationship with us. He loves us so much that He sent His only son, Jesus, to die for us, so He could have a relationship with us (John 3:16). Jesus simply says, "if you love me, you will obey my commands"(John14:15 NCV). In return, God would be honored if we would obey and do good to show our appreciation of his love. The Bible says, “the Lord has told you, what is good; he has told you what he wants from you; to do what is right to other people; love being kind to others and live humbly, obeying your God” (Micah 6:8 NCV). So, do you want to make God smile? Love God. Love people. Obey His Word.
The rich and the poor have a common bond;
The Lord is the Maker of them all.
God cares for all of us. He designed each of us before we were in our mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13). According to Matthew 10:30, He knows the numbers of hairs on each of our heads. Each of us is valuable to God (v. 31). We are His creations. He has plans for all of us. God does not desire to see any of us looked down upon or treated unfairly due to a lack of money or status. We have a common bond, perhaps the greatest reason not to treat each other differently, God created us all. God is our Father; therefore, we are brothers and sisters born with the same amount of love and details as the next person. And because God poured out the same amount of love for each of us, it bothers Him when we treat each other as if one is less than the other. As we continue in Proverbs Chapter 22, we read more about how to relate to the poor and the rich: verse 9 says, “He who generous will be blessed, For he gives some of his food to the poor;” verse 16 says, “He who oppresses or exploits the poor to get more for himself or who gives to the rich [to gain influence and favor] will only come to poverty;” and lastly verse 22 says, “Do not rob the poor because he is poor [and defenseless]”. For God knows that just living in this world has its own tribulations, so He “shows no partiality [no arbitrary favoritism; with Him one person is not more important than another] (Romans 2:11). Our Creator calls us to do the same, not show favoritism. As Psalm 139:14 states that which David did, we should also give thanks and praises to God, for we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are His works. His wonderful works formed you, me, and your neighbor too! Give God thanks for us all.
Be sensible when you dine with a stingy man and don’t eat more than you should. For as he thinks within himself, so is he, He will grudgingly say, “Go ahead and eat all you want,” but in his heart, he resents the fact that he has to pay for your meal. You’ll be sorry you ate anything at all, and all your compliments will be wasted.
Do you know that person? That person who gives but seems to hold it against you when you accept it? He gives out of pretense, not of pleasure. Stingy, selfish, and manipulative people will get back what they give. In his efforts to keep more for himself, thinking he is protecting, or doing right for himself when, in actuality, he is limiting the blessings he can receive. According to II Corinthians 9:6 TPT, “A stingy sower will reap a meager harvest, but the one who sows from a generous spirit will reap an abundant harvest.” We must discern what type of spirit we are dealing with in others, and ourselves. Are we being generous or pretending to be generous? Are we giving from brotherly love or religious duty? Our innermost thoughts can manifest themselves in our actions. Even though a stingy giver is still a giver, God examines the heart. The Bible says, “Let each one [give] as he has made up in his own mind and purposed in his heart, not reluctantly or sorrowfully or under compulsion, for God loves (He takes pleasure in, prizes above other things, and is unwilling to abandon or to do without) a cheerful (joyous, “prompt to do it” giver [whose heart is in his giving]” (v 7 AMPC). Don’t be a giver that regrets, be a giver that rejoices! God loves a cheerful and sincere giver!
First, finish your outside work and prepare your fields,
After that, you can build your house.
Preparation is key to a solid foundation. We have to put first things first as God intends for us to do, just as He does. God sent His son Jesus Christ to establish His kingdom, but first, he sent prophets and messengers to prepare the way for Jesus’s coming. In Luke 7:27, we learn that John the Baptist was a messenger sent ahead of Jesus to prepare the way, to set the foundation of Jesus’ teaching. Once Jesus had arrived to build His kingdom, He also told us of His plans to prepare a place for us, so that we could come and dwell with Him in His house (John 14:3). Preparation is key. In order for us to live according to God’s will, we first plan, then prepare, by reading, listening, and following instructions, and after that, our house, our families, our lives will be well built. The Bible says, “By wisdom a house is built, by understanding it is prepared” (Proverbs 24:3 TLV). First things first, we must get an understanding to establish a strong foundation for our lives. The preparation that comes from understanding who God is and how He operates in our lives sets the foundation that allows us to build our house of wisdom, living according to the knowledge of God. The more we understand and know God, the more rooms we will add to our house, and the more powerful experiences will add to our lives. So, let us be a person who prepares, listens, and obeys the Word of God, then live our lives according to what we have learned. Be a person, a builder, as Jesus describes in Luke 6:48-49 TPT, “who chooses the right place to build a house and then lays a deep secure foundation. When storms and floods rage against that house, it continues to stand strong and unshaken through the tempest, for it has been wisely built on the right foundation. But the one who has heard my teaching and does not obey it is like a man who builds a house without laying a foundation whatsoever. When the storms and floods rage against that house, it will immediately collapse and become a total loss.” So first, let’s pull out our blueprint, the Bible, and then we can build our houses on a solid foundation, Jesus!
When a lover of God gives in and compromises with the wickedness, It can be compared to contaminating a stream with sewage or polluting a fountain.
Sometimes we fail to “be the Bible.” Even the lovers of God, sometimes give in to the love of our flesh. Our God knows that about us, He knows we “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23 NKJV). Mercifully, God loves us still the same. As a matter of fact, Christ proved God’s passionate love for us, by dying in our place while we were still [sinners], lost and ungodly (Romans 5:8 TPT)! When we muddy our lives with choices that do not reflect who we are, God promises us if we call upon His great name, and receive His Holy Spirit, He will sprinkle clean water on us, and we shall be clean; He will cleanse us from all our filthiness; He will deliver us from our uncleanness, according to Ezekiel 3623-28 NKJV). When we realize we allowed the ways of man to influence us more than the ways of God, we should know we do not have to remain as a polluted fountain. We must “lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness and with a humble spirit, we absorb God’s Word, which has been implanted within our nature, for the Word of Life has power to continually deliver us (James 1:21 NKJV, MSG). When our stream becomes dark and murky, call out to Jesus, the Living Water, for He is able to cleanse, refresh, and restore us.
Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death,
Is the man who deceives his neighbor,
And says, I was only joking!
The way we treat our neighbor, our acquaintance, our friend, can reveal what values we live by. A person who is careless with their words or actions shows how much or how little he cares about those who would be affected by those words or actions. It is considered madness to deceive others in ways that are so harmful, then, to think when caught in this deception a simple shrug and “I was just joking” would be sufficient to justify the hurt. God expects more from us than that. We should always strive to walk in love and give thanks for another. The Bible tells us, “Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes-these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God. Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him” (Ephesians 5:4,6 NLT). Furthermore, the way we treat our neighbors also reveals our obedience to God. When asked by one of the Pharisees which is the most important commandment, Jesus replied, “’ You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Matthew 22:36-38). Consequently, knowing to love your neighbor is the second greatest commandment, which is also said to be equally important as the first, we should show love, honor, and respect to our neighbors with words and actions at every opportunity that arises. By this, we will show our love and obedience to God. So with our hearts and mind in the right place, we could follow in the kindness of Mr. Rogers from Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood and seek out someone every day and say:
It’s a beautiful day in this neighborhood,
A beautiful day for a neighbor,
Would you be mine?
Could you be mine?
Won’t you be my neighbor?
Fire tests the purity of silver and gold,
but a person is tested by being praised.
Why do we do what we do? Do we do good for the praise of men or the glory of God? After all the accolades and pat on the backs are given, after all the honors and awards are passed out, after the looks of admiration and winks of acknowledgment have ceased, what we will we do? Will we sit back, cross our legs, and bask in our successes or will we fall to our knees, with tears and awe, and worship our God, our Creator, our King of glory? When all the praise of men is done, the Lord examines our hearts and motives. It is good to do good works, in fact, we are created to do good works (Ephesians 2:10). Nevertheless, we must not miss the reason to do good works. The Bible says, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16 NKJV). Our main purpose in life, in all that we do, is to glorify God, our Father (I Corinthians 15:43)! Proverbs 25:27 warns us that “to seek one’s own glory is not glory” at all. In Jeremiah 9:23-24, the Lord says, “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, Let not the mighty man glory in his might, Nor let the rich man glory in his riches; But let him who glorifies glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight.” When we are praised, we should praise God more. In due course, when the exam is put before us and we are tested with praise, our hearts’ best answer is to “give glory and honor and thanks to Him who sits on the throne, who lives forever and ever, for all He created all things, and by Him will they exist and were created” (Revelation 4:9,11)!
Guilty criminals experience paranoia even though no one threatens them,
But the innocent lovers of God because of righteousness will have the boldness of a young ferocious lion!
When I am afraid, I call on one of my favorite scriptures, II Timothy 1:7 AMP, which reads, “For God did not give us a spirit of fear and timidity or cowardice or fear, but [He has given us a spirit] of power and love and of sound judgment and personal discipline [abilities that result in a calm, well-balanced mind and self-control]. It is so comforting to know Holy Spirit in us will give us boldness (Acts 4:31). We can be bold in Christ for Christ. There is no need to fear man nor evil-real or imagined. The Bible exclaims, “The wicked run away when no one is chasing them, but the godly are as bold as lions (Proverbs 28:1 NLT). King David explains in Psalms 27:1, “The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” He goes on to say in verse 3, “Though an army may encamp against me, My heart shall not fear; Though war may rise against me, In this I will be confident.” We do not need to run from anything, we need to run to God! For those who trust in Him, God is our strong tower, our fortress, our refuge, our strength, and our protection (Nahum 1:7). Because our active belief in the Lord our God makes us righteous, we can “therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16). William Shakespeare penned the phrase, “A coward dies a thousand deaths, but a hero dies but once.” Jesus is our hero. Be bold. Be brave. Be like Jesus.