Proverbs 10

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I was sitting at home, casually perusing through Facebook when I noticed a pattern on my feed.  All of my friends were posting photos of their date nights, snaps with their husbands for a night on the town, and those strange mirror selfies while getting dressed up for dinner.

My first thought was “Seriously?  Why are all of these people going out on a weeknight? Ugh!  Don’t they have to work tomorrow?  It’s after 9:00 for goodness sake!”

Me second thought after realizing it was Friday, and therefore perfectly acceptable to do such things past 9:00pm was “Wow. You’re getting old.  You should get out more.”  This thought was quickly forgotten as it was almost my bedtime.

My third thought?  Fear.  Absolute fear.  About what, you ask?  I’ll let you take a guess.  Better yet, maybe you can just answer yourself.  When it comes to your singleness, what’s the biggest fear that you have?  The biggest fear that most of us have?

That we’ll die alone, never having known the pursuit of a godly man.  Or even just a sane man with good credit, a solid career, and all of his teeth.

Either way, a lot of us walk around with holy smiles on our face.  Pretending as if we’re content in our single life, when inside we are absolutely petrified.  We quote scriptures about guarding our hearts, tell our married friends and family that we’re patiently waiting on our Boaz, while our hearts are screaming with jealousy and trepidation.

We are overcome with doubt that the desires of our hearts will never be met.  That we’ll be that old cat lady instead of the woman growing old with the man of her prayers and dreams.

And I have to admit, I sometimes get caught up in the allure of fear.  See, that’s the thing that people don’t tell you about fear.  As much as some claim that fear is some evil, dreadful place to wallow, it is so incredibly comfortable and attractive to stay there.  I mean, isn’t it much easier to live in fear and manipulate your way to ‘happiness’ than to allow God to bring his promises full circle in His time?

But when we live in fear, we know what to expect – nothing (Proverbs 10:28).  There are no promises, no increase, no surprises, no change.  We get exactly what we feared in the first place.

When we live in the hope of God’s will, however, that’s where things can get tricky.  When we stand on the promises of God, we should expect the unexpected.  In fact, we should expect that we’ll never know what to expect.  Except that He can make the impossible possible, even for old ladies like me who go to bed before 10:00pm most nights.

And choosing to believe His will more than our own is not easy or even permanent.  It is a day to day, and sometimes moment to moment decision to trust that what He has for us is infinitely better than anything we could manufacture on our own.

So the next time you’re scrolling through Facebook on a Friday night, or resorting once again to a solitary night of Netflix ’n’ Chill, just remember to keep smiling and practice being content when fear threatens to darken your joy.  Guard your hearts and keep speaking the promises of His word over your life.  And keep telling your family and friends that, yes, you’re still patiently waiting because our God is always faithful.

After all, you are what you fear.  So will you fear Him or the monotonous makings of your own imagination?

Join the conversation!  What is your response or what else struck you from Proverbs 10?

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roz Roz

Hey there!  My name is Roz.  I’m a full time working, single, homeschooling mother to the world’s funniest 5 year old on the planet.  I’m an introvert who is obsessed with bacon.  I like to play music extremely loudly in my car and will keep singing at full voice even when you turn to stare.  I also blog occasionally over at beautyfullyflawed.com where I write words about Jesus, homeschooling, and the beauty of imperfections.  I look forward to sharing my imperfections with you, as well.

Proverbs 8

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Proverbs 8 deals with the concept of wisdom.  Let me try to focus our discussion here by looking at three of the most important questions I believe this passage answers: what is wisdom?  What is wisdom like?  And who is wisdom for?

First, what is wisdom?  Whole books could be written on this subject, but Proverbs 8:22-31 gives us a hint at where to start.  Notice that these verses describe wisdom’s role in the design of creation, and its relationship to man.  Essentially, wisdom boils down to living well, by living in accordance with how God designed His creation to function.  For example, wisdom tells us, among other things, not to walk off of cliffs.  God designed His creation to function in a certain way—according to the law of gravity, in this case—and walking off a cliff neglects the wisdom in that design.  If you want to live well, then it must be in accordance with God’s design for His creation.

That’s a trivial example, of course, but it serves to demonstrate just how vital a life of wisdom is: in relationships, in finances, and in everything else.  In fact, our reading today reminds us that there is virtually nothing which can compare with the value of a life lived well, a life lived in wisdom: “all desirable things cannot compare with [wisdom]” (8:11).  This reveals what wisdom is like: it is better than anything else you could ask for in this life.

If you think about it, that’s quite a statement.  Nothing desirable can compare with wisdom.  Having a successful career?  Wisdom is better.  Getting married and raising a family?  Believe it or not, wisdom is still better.  Even having a ministry with unimaginable impact?  If it comes at the expense of wisdom, it just isn’t worth it.

Put this way, we begin to see that living in wisdom has a lot in common with living from an eternal perspective.  It’s not that the things we might substitute for wisdom are in themselves bad—wanting a godly husband or a booming ministry is anything but wrong—it’s that they pale in comparison to what matters eternally.  That’s why wisdom is so preoccupied with “the fear of the Lord” (8:13): it is only the fear and love of the Lord which can ultimately displace the idols of our hearts, and replace them with an eternal perspective.

And this brings me to the final question: who is wisdom for?  This is the part where things become truly amazing.  See, most of us know that wisdom is something to strive for and aspire to.  Many of us can even pin-point what wisdom is and why it matters.  But the awesome thing is that wisdom is for you, today: “those who diligently seek me [i.e., wisdom] will find me” (8:17, emphasis added).  What a wonderful promise to embrace.  If you will seek it diligently, wisdom—something precious beyond all else—can be yours, today.

If we want to live well, we must seek wisdom.  If we seek wisdom, we will find it.  And nothing else we desire can compare with that glorious promise.

Join the conversation!  What connects with you from this post or what struck you from Proverbs 8?

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meandallysonheadshot Christopher Plumberg

I am a postdoctoral scholar studying theoretical nuclear physics at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, where I live with my wife Allyson and nine-month-old daughter Georgia Clementine.  I am a regular blogger for various Christian ministries and blogs, including GotQuestions.org,blogos.org, and CompellingTruth.org.  I also have a (rarely updated) personal blog which can be viewed at caelienarrant.blogspot.com.  I love learning about theology, philosophy, science, and apologetics, and then sharing what I learn with others.