Big Hill Bible Studies
2 July 2018 Entry
There are two statements made in this chapter I'd like to challenge you to ponder for moment or two. They are found in verse 1 and verse 16.
1. "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."
If scripture tells us that we are to do all things in love, why do we even speak harsh words? In verse 28 we are told, "The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things." I wonder how many times we check ourselves before we allow "evil things" to come out of our mouth. I know there are times in my life words seem to come out of my mouth as a reaction to situations before I even have time to think about what to say. That makes me wonder where my heart. Proverbs 23:7a tells us, "For as he thinks within himself, so he is." If we are to be loving and humble, a gentle answer would seem to be the way we should always respond in each situation, don't you think?
I believe the old adage "think before you speak" could well have been taken from Proverbs. It is wise to know what you are saying, and I think many times we have already hurt someone before we even realize we have spoken at all.
2. "Better a little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and turmoil with it."
I'd like to challenge you to try something tomorrow morning. Live a day without excess and thank God for the essentials. Wake up and thank God that you did wake up. Brush your teeth and thank God for all that is involved in that - water, a tooth brush, toothpaste, teeth (yours or the ones you bought) and the dwelling that has the sink in it. Then thank God for the shower or bath you take and all that is involved there - soap, shampoo, your wash cloth, towels, etc. Then thank Him for the clothes you have to put on and the closet they have come out of. Are you beginning to see where I am going with this. Now, what if you passed on that cup of coffee and the bacon and egg breakfast? What if you only had a piece of bread and a glass of water? Then what if you were to drive to work (after thanking the Lord for the car you have), without the A/C or listening to the radio? Consider doing all this and realizing this is just the start of your day.
Consider just how much we do have and the blessings that are ours - even before we start thinking about them! I'd challenge you to think about how all the things we have can get in the way of our time with the Lord. What if we used the time we take in fixing the coffee and frying the bacon and eggs and doing the dishes, to just stop and pray, thanking God for the bread and water? Which would have been more profitable for us as we began our day?