August 9, 2009
Day 1 – Wisdom and Discipline
Scripture: Proverbs 1: 1-7 (NLT)
1These are the proverbs of Solomon, David’s son, king of Israel. 2Their purpose is to teach people wisdom and discipline, to help them understand the insights of the wise. 3Their purpose is to teach people to live disciplined and successful lives, to help them do what is right, just, and fair. 4These proverbs will give insight to the simple, knowledge and discernment to the young.
5Let the wise listen to these proverbs and become even wiser. Let those with understanding receive guidance 6by exploring the meaning in these proverbs and parables, the words of the wise and their riddles.
7Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.
What is the writer saying?
The words found in the Book of Proverbs are to teach me wisdom and to help me live a life of discipline, so my actions might be right and my dealings with others might be just and fair. These are for everybody. Through them the wise become wiser, the simple and unlearned gain insight, students and teens gain knowledge and begin to develop discernment. But to fully benefit from these proverbs, one must explore the deeper meaning of these wise riddles and sayings.
Undergirding the understanding of these proverbs must be a healthy reverence and fear of God, just as one might fear a father. But the fool will neither fear God nor seek wisdom and discipline in his or her life.
How does this apply to me?
I am struck again with the reality that, regardless of how long I have been on the Christian journey there is so much change that still must be affected in my life. I am reminded that when my actions are wrong, they result from my failure to make the right choices. When my words are harsh, it is not because someone drove me to frustration; rather, it is because I made the wrong choice. I chose to speak hastily and from my sinful nature rather than speaking from the new nature that was placed in me on the day I was saved 36 years ago. This book is for me. God wants to make me wise and god-like. But I must recognize Him as my Father and the One to whom I must one day give account.
My prayer today is for wisdom. My prayer is not that I might gain insight that will result in change in others; my prayer is that God might give me insight that will change me.
My prayer today:
“Oh God, my Maker and my Wisdom, how do I allow myself to be so incredibly out of touch with you sometimes? It’s not just my thoughts; what I do so often is not right, just or fair. My prayer today is for understanding of the wisdom of this book. Just as Solomon prayed that he might be wise above all others, I pray that, through his wisdom as found in this book, I might gain understanding of you, myself and of others, and that I might develop godly discipline that changes the way I think, speak and act. You are my Maker and my Wisdom. I cannot do this without you. Abide in me, and may the fruit of your presence within me be a mature and Christ-like character that causes people to turn to and worship you.”