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Posted By Nan

11:11-14
There is a theme in these four verses, the unwise person and their impact on others.
In verse 11 we read about the city doing well when its citizens and leaders are righteous, wise people. And we read of the city being destroyed by the unrighteous. Verse 14 at the end of the section gives a word of caution about leaders. The leaders of a nation need to be wise and seek wise counsel. The leader who will not seek advice, who rushes to express an opinion, especially one that is unrighteous, who acts like a petulant child rather than a wise adult, will destroy the nation they lead.
The middle verses look at a more individual level. They talk of the person who is unwise. That person shows contempt for others and uses put downs and insults in communicating with others. The person who is wise does not criticise. That person keeps their mouth shut and seeks to understand and make allowances for another person. They offer to help and offer friendship when it is needed. The unwise person gossips and makes comments to others and on social media and judges without finding out all the facts. They are always quick to condemn. While on the subject of gossips, these verses also tell us that nothing is ‘in confidence’ to the unwise. The wise are trustworthy and wil hold their tongues. The wise person is one others trust and feel safe with. This is a person of integrity and good character.
Which person is you? Do you act like the righteous, wise person who behaves like Jesus or like the critical, condemning, judging, gossip who brings hatred and pain to others, not the love Jesus desires them to bring?
 

 
Posted By Nan

Today I want to step away from Proverbs to talk about Blue Knot Day. This day was on Monday 24 October. On this day in Australia, we remember those who were abused in childhood. That abuse ranged from neglect, physical, emotional and sexual abuse, living in an environment where there was abuse, growing up in a war zone and so on. So often those who grow up with terrifying events in tnheir lives wonder why God didn’t intervene. Frequently I sit with people struggling to deal with their terrifying childhoods. At other times I sit with the horror of my own terrifying childhood. Although God has shown me His presence in my early life and His anger at what was done to me, I still find myself asking Him why He allowed it. I read some amazing blogs with beautiful homilies that are so practical and inspirational and I wish God would direct me to write like that. But He doesn’t. He directs me to turn to scripture and explain it. And He answers that He gave me an analytic ability for a reason and what I write is important to Him, even if I feel it is not as helpful as those lovely homilies.
In times of catastrophe God sits on His throne, He doesn’t pace and become distressed, He remains calm and in charge. Isaiah discovered this in Isaiah 6:1 when at a time of great crisis in Israel he was drawn up into Heaven and God was sitting on His throne. As we surrender ourselves in faith and conform ourselves to God we will know that peace too. God sits on His throne in heaven and He. Has. A. Plan. When we are caught up in the stress of our difficulties we cannot see God working in our lives. But He is working, it is just that we often can’t see that. So stop fighting and Trust Him and trust that He. Trusts. You. And He can and will use you.
Continued in second blog entry.

 
Posted By Nan

In my search today for answers I came up with 4 Bible verses, all of which speak of great peace and comfort.

Isaiah 66:13(NIV) As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you …

Your mother may have never given you the comfort you needed, But God did, does and always will. It may seem as though He didn’t, but you have nothing to compare to your own experience. I wonder what it would have been like if He hadn’t comforted you?

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV) Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.

God’s comfort is there for us and His comfort enables us to be His comfort to others. I love those verses. Just think, you can comfort because God has comforted you! I can comfort because God has comforted me! All can comfort because God has comforted them! That is so amazing.

Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV) Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.

It may seem otherwise, but God is there. He did not approve of the abuse. It makes Him angry. But He has a plan that we cannot understand and He does go with us.

Psalm 91:1 (NIV) He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the Shadow of the Almighty.

His comfort is there. Please pray for yourself if you need comfort and He will give it. And pray for others who need it too.

 
Posted By Nan

11:1-10
God loves Justice. By Justice I don’t mean a person being convicted of breaking a law, I mean honest treatment, ethical behaviour and especially social justice. Social justice is sadly marginalised and made into a ‘dirty word’ by many politicians but social justice is God’s number one concern for His people. In verse one we hear that God hates the dishonest, the ones who cheat others, the ones who don’t behave justly towards others.
Then we read that the self-important person, full of pride, will find emptiness and shame following them. By contrast the humble, who have submitted to the pruning of life’s trials, who have put self aside to take on Jesus, receive Godly Wisdom.
These people, the honest and humble, have integrity and this will guide them. Sadly the dishonest person, full of pride, will be destroyed by their very corruptness. It is wise to remember that wealth and material possessions do not provide security from God’s wrath. Only righteousness will deliver the faithful from death.
The righteous person will find their righteousness guides them well through life. Not so the wicked whose greed will be their undoing. The wicked will face death knowing they made the wrong decision in not following God. The wicked will try to destroy the righteous, but the faith of the righteous will save them. The wicked will die and not be mourned. Instead people will celebrate their death.
The theme here is of the danger of being a cheat and thief. Of arrogance and not caring who is hurt in the pursuit of wealth. Of serving money, not God. Our modern world worships the wealthy. And many rush to emulate that deceitful behaviour. Even people in churches put the pursuit of money ahead of seeking God. Beware the way that leads to death.
God honours the honest and righteous, the rest He casts out.
 

 
Posted By Nan

10:26-32
In life, the fool is the one who doesn’t work wholeheartedly and diligently at his job. His employer will find him unpleasant to have. The righteous person will endeavour to work diligently. This person will be pleasant to employ and will gain a good reputation for hard work.
The righteous person is one who fears God. That is wisdom and it will expand that person’s life and bring joy to his existence. But the fool will not enjoy that abundance. Instead he will know a life that is unfulfilled and lacking in Godly joy.
Following Godly wisdom gives strength and provides a sanctuary when life is uncertain. Those who follow foolishness find no sanctuary. God promised peace and long life in the land to those who followed His commands (Deuteronomy 29). Those who seek Godly wisdom will receive this blessing, but those who seek foolishness shall be removed from God’s land.
Listen to the wise, they speak words of Godly wisdom and encouragement but the words of the fool are full of spite and perversity. Those words will bring only ruin.
All these verses speak of the life of the person who loves God and lives fully committed to Him. It is the ideal of how we should aspire to live. In life we will fail frequently. God knows this. But He leaves the door open for us, showing us the way to aspire to be and offering us the opportunity to constantly refine ourselves, to offer our willingness and obedience daily. To choose the way of the wise.
 

 


 
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Nan
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