Tuesday, July 12, 2011

31 DAYS TO A WISER YOU: Proverbs Chapter 12

Photo Courtesy Of Victor Bezrukov
This is part of a series, studying the book of Proverbs during the month of July, 2011. For more details click here.

I have one sister named Jenn who is a year and a half younger than me.  Growing up, I was always the child struggling with school - couldn't focus in class, struggling to focus on my schoolwork, somehow forgetting homework that was due until mere minutes before the class bell rang.  Jenn, however, was the exact opposite.  She was diligent, prepared,  focused, and determined - in fact she actually skipped a year because she excelled in her classes.

I used to say she was book smart, but I had common sense.  I reasoned that, even though she understood geometry and biology, I was better prepared for life because I somehow knew how to handle myself in the real world.  In retrospect, saying I had more common sense was really a wussy way of admitting that she was just smarter than me.  But a teenage guy will reason just about anything with himself to avoid letting his sister be better at something.

Chapter 12 is a passage of straight-up common sense.  Anyone can learn valuable life lessons from these verses. My friend Nancy commented that Chapter 11 contains so many little nuggets of wisdom, that a single day could be spent developing each of the 31 verses.  That's exactly how I feel about this chapter too.  There's no real theme, other than the randomness of the instruction on how to live a life pleasing to Him.  

So many times, we try to complicate life with too many uneccesary burdens, most often which are brought on by ourselves.  In this chapter, I hear a call to simplicity, a call to remove the things that get in the way of our worship, a call to slow down and use common sense.  Simplicity and humility go hand in hand.  Then, and only then, will we truly understand and hear from our Father.   

Key Verses For Me
Proverbs 12:9 - Better to be an ordinary person with a servant than to be self-important but have no food. 

"Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” - Leonardo da Vinci

“Eliminate physical clutter.  More importantly, eliminate spiritual clutter.” - D.H. Mondfleur

Related Scriptures
2 Corinthians 1:12 - We can say with confidence and a clear conscience that we have lived with a God-given holiness and sincerity  in all our dealings.  We have depended on God's grace, not on our own human wisdom.  That is how we have conducted ourselves before the world, and especially toward you.
Psalm 119:130 - The teaching of your word gives light, so even the simple can understand.

Oh Heavenly Father, thank you for this new day You've so graciously given to each of us.  I pray that we will each take a moment to slow down, to pause, and tomeditate on Your words so that we can live a life more pleasing to you.  Let Your wisdom shine down on us clearly, so that the decisions we make are obviously what You desire from us.  Thank You for all You have done, are doing, and are yet to do.     

So what verse(s) stick out to you and why?


  1. Verse 23 spoke to me this morning:

    The wise don’t make a show of their knowledge, but fools broadcast their foolishness.

    I’ve become even more aware of this since everyone seems to be on Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc. Some folks really need to think twice before posting… And that includes myself. A little self-awareness goes a long way!

  2. Verse 16 "A fool shows his annoyance at once, but a prudent man overlooks an insult." Oh boy. Now there's a can of worms! This reminds me of a day in Walmart last summer. I had gone to customer service only to inquire about a matter. No returns or anything like that. Had absolutely nothing in my hands. Only two people there before me. One being helped and another lady with two young kids who would have been called next. One employee, for whatever reason, not on the cash register, walked back toward me and the other lady. When he got to our end, I simply walked across to him without invading the other lady's space and began to ask my question. I got six words out and from nowhere comes an entire arm pushing across my chest with the statement "I've been waiting in this line and I'm next". I was totally shocked and appaulled. I had "never" been in a situation like that. My instinct was to say in a serious manner "Don't put your hands on me" which I did. She continued poking me all over my chest with her index finger. I mean really!!! I continued telling her to keep her hands off of me with my voice becoming more projected. She finally stopped. I could only think how simple minded she was not knowing someone elses intentions. I have asked others what they would have done. Some didn't know. Others would have poked her back or decked her. I responded the only way I knew to do at the time. In defense of God I apologize for not overlooking an insult and not being slow to my response. There were two fools portrayed here. I should have responded with a gentle answer thus turning away wrath. Should have been more positive with God's truth. Should have walked away and prayed for more wisdom and prayed that she obtained some. Hindsight is 20/20. That is in the past and I can only move forward with the knowledge God gives us. But.....I MEAN REALLY!!!

    What would have been your response PB?

  3. Becky - social media can indeed be a duel edged sword. It can be a blessing to others, or a curse - it's up to the author of the words. Sometimes you just can't hide crazy!

  4. Wow Marilyn - that's some event! My heartfelt apologies for you having to go through that. Unfortunately, there are some people that no amount of words will increase their understand or compassion.

    Being a redhead, I've had my fair share of times when I would have gotten right back in her face. Unfortunately that does none of us any good. It seems that walking away may have been the only option available, short of the employee handling the situation, which it sounds like they didn't.

    Having gone through this once though, I feel for certain you will handle it ever so gracefully if and when it ever happens again.

    Thank you for sharing!