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Wisdom Journey

Wisdom Journey Day 16

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I am mighty because I have control over my spirit, my anger & my pride

Proverbs 16 Contrast the Upright and the Wicked

1 The plans of the heart belong to man, But the answer of the tongue is from the LORD. 2 All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, But the LORD weighs the motives. 3 Commit your works to the LORD And your plans will be established. 4 The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, Even the wicked for the day of evil. 5 Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD ; Assuredly, he will not be unpunished. 6 By loving kindness and truth iniquity is atoned for, And by the fear of the LORD one keeps away from evil. 7 When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. 8 Better is a little with righteousness Than great income with injustice . 9 The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps. 10 A divine decision is in the lips of the king ; His mouth should not err in judgment. 11 A just balance and scales belong to the LORD ; All the weights of the bag are His concern. 12 It is an abomination for kings to commit wicked acts, For a throne is established on righteousness. 13 Righteous lips are the delight of kings, And he who speaks right is loved. 14 The fury of a king is like messengers of death, But a wise man will appease it. 15 In the light of a king’s face is life, And his favor is like a cloud with the spring rain. 16 How much better it is to get wisdom than gold ! And to get understanding is to be chosen above silver. 17 The highway of the upright is to depart from evil ; He who watches his way preserves his life. 18 Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before stumbling. 19 It is better to be humble in spirit with the lowly Than to divide the spoil with the proud. 20 He who gives attention to the word will find good, And blessed is he who trusts in the LORD. 21 The wise in heart will be called understanding, And sweetness of speech increases persuasiveness. 22 Understanding is a fountain of life to one who has it, But the discipline of fools is folly. 23 The heart of the wise instructs his mouth And adds persuasiveness to his lips. 24 Pleasant words are a honeycomb , Sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. 25 There is a way which seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death. 26 A worker’s appetite works for him, For his hunger urges him on. 27 A worthless man digs up evil, While his words are like scorching fire. 28 A perverse man spreads strife, And a slanderer separates intimate friends. 29 A man of violence entices his neighbor And leads him in a way that is not good. 30 He who winks his eyes does so to devise perverse things ; He who compresses his lips brings evil to pass. 31 A gray head is a crown of glory ; It is found in the way of righteousness. 32 He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, And he who rules his spirit, than he who captures a city. 33 The lot is cast into the lap, But its every decision is from the LORD

Some great themes are shared with us this day

  • the Talmud says (direct from this Proverb) Man makes plans and God laughs
  • Persuasiveness – As men we can be persuasive, if only because people listen to us. Who hears your words? Your children, your co-workers, your friends? Are they words that build up and honor God or are they like “scorching fire”?
  • Quit hiding your beautiful gray head – it is a crown of glory!!

I am mighty because I have control over my spirit, my anger & my pride

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Musings

There are Only 3 Things I can Control

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Three things. When you boil it all down there are really only 3 things that each of us controls in life. And that’s only true if you live in the privileged and affluent parts of our world. For some it is only two or one.

Like the primary colors of red, blue and yellow combine to make the whole rainbow it is these primary factors alone that we have the ability to control. All else is a combination of the three.

Your Emotions. To feel is to be human. When a person is unable to feel sorrow, joy or fear there is often a psychological blockage that needs to be worked through. Avoiding situations that touch us in a deep way – like the death of a loved one, the thrill of an adventure or the risk of reaching out in friendship – can limit the depth that we as humans are able to experience life in its fullest.

Controlling our emotions is not about controlling our feelings. It is a matter of controlling how we respond and react to any given situation.

Between action and reaction, cause and effect, there is a moment of time for the human species in which only thought exists. Animals don’t share this opportunity. Their reactions are instinctive, they respond. But for a human, how we respond to a stimuli is always preceded by an opportunity to consider what our response will be.

Do I lash out with angry words when I am cut off in traffic, or consider the possibilities of what the other person may be facing. When the fire alarm goes off do I run for the door or look around and offer assistance. When an offer for intimacy comes do I consider all the repercussions before replying.

It is in that millisecond of time when I insert thought and logic that I become fully aware and fully in control.

Click here to go to the second of the only 3 things you control
Click here to go to the third of the only 3 things you control

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Wisdom Journey

31 Affirmations from Proverbs

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This is a compilation of the 31 affirmations – one from each Proverb

Affirmations are a way to influence your inner voice

Read these often and see how your thinking is changed to the thoughts and wisdom of God

I live in safety and ease, without fear of harm because the Heavenly Wisdom from my Father teaches me to behave prudently & to do what is right and just and fair

I walk with good men along the paths of righteousness. I study the treasure map that is His word, contemplating, memorizing, listening, searching for the Wisdom, Knowledge and Understanding that the Lord wants me to have.

Because I Trust in the Lord and not my own understanding

Accepting His discipline and correction into my life

Because I honor God with my wealth and share with others

& I keep my faith and His love in my heart & mind & actions

I am able to offer sound decisions and accurate discernment.

My life is honored, my home is blessed

My sleep is sweet & my body is healthy

My work is prosperous and my path is straight

As a man of God I keep my eyes and thoughts focused on His work and the blessing He has given me in a beautiful and loving wife.

I accept guidance, teaching, correction and instruction,

for these are the Way of Life.

I avoid lust, sluggishness, entering into pledges or contracts that

can entangle me and my family,

I am a peacemaker within

my community

I protect myself from temptation, lust and destructive acts

by keeping, writing, binding, storing up &

protecting as I would my own sister,

the commandments and promises of God.

Because I answer God’s call to gain wisdom I have Life,

honor, wealth & prosperity,

& even more important I am a man of prudence,

discretion, knowledge, and understanding

In my humble, unassuming, modest and

authentic walk with God

I am cautious to follow wisdom and

avoid the call and temptation of folly

I accept commands and correction,

I seek wise advice and work diligently,

I watch carefully that my words are a blessing, not to me, but to others.

I stand firm in Gods love which covers all wrongs

Wisdom is given to me not for my benefit alone,

but to be used in service to others.

I seek wisdom and advice from others and

therefore I am cautious in choosing wise friends.

I avoid chasing fantasies and keep my eye on the prize,

which is life immortal with God Almighty

As a Man of Integrity I abhor that which is false within me,

stifle my pride and detest the pretender.

The time I spend with men that are wise gives me the support

& wisdom I need to persevere.

As a man of wisdom I consider my plans then

work hard to their accomplishment.

I am in control of my anger &

honor God with my kindness to others.

I walk in honor and humility with a joyful heart

knowing that I play to an audience of one

I am mighty because I have control over my spirit, my anger & my pride

Recognizing that we are all broken creatures who fall short,

I drop a matter, keep silent, cover over an offense

and show Love at all times

God gave me two ears and one mouth – to be used in that same proportion

As a man of God I accept instruction & advice,

raising my children with discipline and understanding.

I honor justice and truth that is pleasing to my Lord.

Though I often fall short, I strive daily to honestly say

“I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”

As a Godly Man of Wisdom I humbly accept my place

among the human race, embracing all people

in my mind and my thoughts as equals, in His eyes and mine

I serve before Kings, as a man of humility and love,

applying my gifts in service to

building His kingdom and serving His creation

I enjoy life’s pleasures modestly, setting an example and

lovingly instructing my children and others

by my witness and words

My power & strength come from wisdom & knowledge

which grow daily when I apply my heart

to what I observe & experience

I am watchful over my behaviors and actions,

seeking to bless others with my conduct and wisdom

for the purpose of bring glory and honor to God alone

I understand the power of my words to build up and tear down

Therefore I am watchful to use words that are truthful and honest

and speak only when appropriate and beneficial

I am intentional about nurturing my friendships

and my business matters for

one feeds my heart and the other my belly.

Jealousy and self praise are held in check by looking

up to God rather than around at other men

I am richly blessed, trusting in God & heavenly wisdom,

walking blameless & serving others

Because I trust in the Lord

and keep myself under control

I can Sing and Be Glad!!

I keep first things first by honoring God

and focusing my loving on those

to whom I am committed.

My world is turning right side up as

I experience the love and contentment

that comes by allowing God to reorder my life

according to His Wisdom

and by acting accordingly

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Wisdom Journey

Wisdom Journey Day 31

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My world is turning right side up as

I experience the love and contentment

that comes by allowing God to reorder my life

according to His Wisdom

and by acting accordingly

Proverbs 31

Sayings of King Lemuel

1 The sayings of King Lemuel–an oracle his mother taught him: 2 “O my son, O son of my womb, O son of my vows, 3 do not spend your strength on women, your vigor on those who ruin kings. 4 “It is not for kings, O Lemuel– not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer, 5 lest they drink and forget what the law decrees, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights. 6 Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish; 7 let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more. 8 “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. 9 Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

The Wife of Noble Character

10 A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. 11 Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. 12 She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life. 13 She selects wool and flax and works with eager hands. 14 She is like the merchant ships, bringing her food from afar. 15 She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls. 16 She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard. 17 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks. 18 She sees that her trading is profitable, and her lamp does not go out at night. 19 In her hand she holds the distaff and grasps the spindle with her fingers. 20 She opens her arms to the poor and extends her hands to the needy. 21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household; for all of them are clothed in scarlet. 22 She makes coverings for her bed; she is clothed in fine linen and purple. 23 Her husband is respected at the city gate, where he takes his seat among the elders of the land. 24 She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies the merchants with sashes. 25 She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come. 26 She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue. 27 She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness. 28 Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: 29 “Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” 30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. 31 Give her the reward she has earned, and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

The Book of Proverbs ends with a beautiful image of a wife of noble character. It is a praise to the woman in your life, verse 29 is about a specific woman, the woman God gave to you, to love and to cherish, to look past the imperfections and love all that is great about her. This is saved for the final pen stroke in this book of wisdom.

Verse 31 reminds me of Ephesians chapter 5: 25 – 27 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

And just before the wisdom of a noble wife we are told once again of the importance God puts on the rights of the poor and the command He gives us to defend those rights.

Imagine what the world would be like if we all did the “Wisdom of the Proverbs”?

Imagine what your world would be like if you were obedient to God’s wisdom?

Just imagine?

My world is turning right side up as

I experience the love and contentment

that comes by allowing God to reorder my life

according to His Wisdom

and by acting accordingly

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