Everyone is a worrier in one way or another. Worry and anxiety reveal that we are dependant upon something or someone other than God to provide our greatest need. More than that, worry distracts us from the purposes of God for our lives, keeping us from the joy of a life surrendered to him. In this passage Jesus calls us to seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, entrusting all other things into his hands.
Proverbs 9 provides a crossroads for the reader. This Chapter is the end of the first part of Proverbs- an introductory section for the rest of the book. Wisdom sets a table before us, inviting us to a life of blessing. Folly sets a trap, inviting us to a life of curses. Solomon calls us to choose the life of wisdom, reminding us that such a decision must be guided by the fear of the Lord; reverential awe of God. Which path will you choose?
In Proverbs 8 wisdom is once again personified as a woman (Just like Chapter 1). But instead of strong warnings against rejecting her, Lady Wisdom here draws the reader in with the rich rewards of pursuing wisdom. The pursuit of God, the source of all wisdom and blessing, is not a dry or lifeless endeavor. The blessing of wisdom is far more valuable than all the riches this world has to offer. Proverbs 8 serves to stir our affections for God and all he has to offer those who seek wisdom in him.
Nestled in the middle of warnings against sexual immorality we find Proverbs 6:1-19. Here Solomon addresses a number of every-day situations that require God’s wisdom and guidance. We once again see that God desires to graciously guide his children through the way of wisdom every area of our lives including financial decisions, the wise use of our time for honorable work, relationships with others, and the use of our words.
Solomon has been exhorting readers to pursue wisdom and flee from folly in various ways. He now turns his attention to the allurement of sexual immorality and the dangers of adultery. Solomon not only warns against the consequences of sexual sin; he also shows the provision of God in the gift of sex according to his design. What does it look like to flee sexual temptation and live a life of purity before God? Such a life must flow out of a heart transformed by his grace.
In The Parable of the Soils Jesus shows us that there are many ways to hear God’s word. We can hear with hard, shallow, distracted hearts. Or we can hear with receptive hearts that receive the word in a transformative way. Jesus’ words here are both challenging and encouraging. We’re challenged to evaluate our own hearts as we hear God’s word and encouraged to prayerfully trust God as we sow the seeds of the gospel around us.
God is not explicitly mentioned in Proverbs 4, but his presence is woven throughout as a wise Father continues to exhort his son to pursue wisdom. The message of Proverbs 4 is simple; will you pursue the way of wisdom or the way of wickedness? The decision, while simple, is not an easy one. How do we pursue wisdom? It's not a matter of just trying harder, but a matter of the heart. Come ready to hear God's word as we learn, by his grace, to keep our hearts with all vigilance in our pursuit of wisdom.
The one who finds wisdom is truly blessed and the life of true blessing is holistic. This passage walks us through the blessing of wisdom showing how it affects our inward desires, our relationship with God, and the way we interact with others. What would your life look like if you built it upon the solid foundation of God's precious wisdom?
Even as we pursue godly wisdom we are faced with endless unknowns. What will tomorrow bring? Will our plans turn out the way we expect? What happens when they don't? Such questions can reveal the anxiety of our hearts. It's here where Proverbs tells us to trust not in ourselves but in The LORD who makes our paths straight.
In Proverbs 2:1-22 we see that the result of finding wisdom is a righteous life of obedience before God and others. Wisdom and the right knowledge of God affect every area of our lives; from the depth of our heart and soul (v.10) to the way we walk the path of life (v.9). And as we walk the path of wisdom God, the source of wisdom, guards and protects.