Whoever fears the Lord walks uprightly, but those who despise him are devious in their ways.
Proverbs 14:2 (from Bible.com)
A thought: “Sit up straight! Don’t slouch!” No doubt we all have heard this from parents in our youth. If we respected them, or feared their discipline, we would obey. The cartoon image of a bent-over villain, devising evil, springs to mind, too. They must have hated their parents and reaped their reward! Our relationship and attitude to God will reflect how we treat His rules.
A prayer: Dear Lord, Your ways are best, and they are best because You are best. Guide me in Your ways. Amen.
The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
Proverbs 14:1 (from Bible.com)
A thought: Oh, wowzers! House is another word for legacy or family, but this proverb uses the imagery of that word effectively! How easy is it to build or destroy? Depends. It might take a while to build, but a moment to tear down. I don’t want to be responsible for destroying my legacy. I must seek wisdom to build it up, and not foolishly, wantonly bring it down.
A prayer: Father, you care about how we establish ourselves and our families. May we honour you and all that you have given us. Amen.
The righteous eat to their hearts’ content, but the stomach of the wicked goes hungry.Proverbs 13:25 (from Bible.com)
A thought: Do we deserve the food we eat? Maybe that’s the issue, that we feel entitled to what we receive. We might even do whatever it takes to get what we want. Ultimately, God judges such attitudes. If we choose to be thankful for all we have, maybe then we can be fully content with it. To always be craving what others have, to always be ungrateful, that leads to a very hungry appetite.
A prayer: Dear Father, you richly supply me with everything I need. May I live a life of gratitude and contentment. Amen.
Whoever spares the rod hates their children, but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.Proverbs 13:24 (From Bible.com)
A thought: Am I going to be a buddy for my child, or a father? Are we going to be best friends and do whatever they want, or will I guide their behaviour? Whilst its pretty clear not every young child will respond positively to a smack, I need to be willing to discipline them in some way. I want to love my potential children, not hate them by trying to win their favour all the time.
A prayer: Lord God, I am a sinful human being, but becoming a father is a gift from You. I want to follow Your leading in bringing up my children righteously. May I also submit myself to Your discipline, as is right. Amen.
An unplowed field produces food for the poor, but injustice sweeps it away.Proverbs 13:23 (Bible.com)
A thought: People are tempted to look after themselves most of time. Israel had some laws in place to make sure landowners left some produce un-gathered for any destitute/needy passer-bys. To not leave something for others from our abundance, is an injustice that God will judge.
A prayer: Dear God, you have given me so much. Help me live rightly, generously, and not selfishly. My life is not my own. It belongs to Jesus. Amen.
A good person leaves an inheritance for their children’s children, but a sinner’s wealth is stored up for the righteous.Proverbs 13:22 (from Bible.com)
A thought: Leaving a legacy of good deeds is the best inheritance for your children. God honours those who please Him.
A prayer: Dear Father, help me please you with how I store up for the future. You have so abundantly provided for me. Thankyou.
Trouble pursues the sinner,
but the righteous are rewarded with good things.Proverbs 13:21 (from Bible.com)
A thought: I have never gained so much from my sin that it beats the negative results. I want to be holy in my work and life, looking to a Saviour who went before me and saved me.
A prayer: Jesus, you paid no heed to the shame of the cross, because you saw ahead to the joy of heaven. Help me seek you. Amen
Walk with the wise and become wise,
for a companion of fools suffers harm.Proverbs 13:20 (from Bible.com)
A thought: I want to learn well. Am I buddies with people who will aid me or hinder me?
A prayer: Good Father, guide me to the people I should learn from. I want to become wise.
A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul,
but fools detest turning from evil.Proverbs 13:19 (from Bible.com)
A thought: Immediate gratification is not an evil, unless it’s all we live for. May we long for things that have value and wait patiently for them.
A prayer: Jesus, you are my hope and I long for you. Satisfy me.
Whoever disregards discipline comes to poverty and shame,
but whoever heeds correction is honored.Proverbs 13:18 (from Bible.com)
A thought: Do I listen to or ignore wise people? I hate to be corrected, but I also don’t want to be ruined.
A prayer: Father, may I come under your discipline, and heed your correction. Keep me humble so that I may then be honoured. Amen.