06/08/15 Simple Lessons for Life

READING: Proverbs 16-18

TEXTS AND APPLICATION: There is so much wisdom in Proverbs that I think I sometimes miss it. In today

’s readings, these statements are simple, but profound. They are so simple, in fact, that I realize my foolishness if I don’t follow them. 

1. I might make my own plans, but the Lord knows my heart.

I may believe my choices are right, but the Lord peers through my decisions to see my heart. He alone is able to see when I have deceived myself into thinking all is right — as even righteous people might do. He is the “tester of [my] heart” (Prov. 17:3). I am reminded that my heart left alone from the power of God always leans in the wrong direction. 

Prov. 16:2 All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the Lord evaluates the motives.

2. I would be wise to restrain my words and listen more. 

To be honest, I lead myself into trouble more often than I care to admit. On one hand, I tend 

to react quickly and speak too rapidly when confronted with an issue. On the other hand, I   

listen far too little. The writer of Proverbs thus hits me at two levels: 

Prov. 17:27 The intelligent person restrains his words, and one who keeps a cool head is a 

man of understanding.

Prov.  18:13 The one who gives an answer before he listens—this is foolishness and 

disgrace for him.

3. My tendency to be introverted and isolated is not helpful. 

I admit that I enjoy my own time, but I must also admit my recurrent failures because I’ve 

often sought too little input from others (another theme of Proverbs). I need to monitor 

myself more to make sure that I’m not hindering my work and my witness by isolating 

myself. What I need to do is remember that God always knows my heart (#1 above)

Prov. 18:1 One who isolates himself pursues selfish desires; he rebels against all sound 



PRAYER: Pray that I — and all of us — will live with godly motives today. Pray we will live in community, listen well, and speak wisely.  

TOMORROW’S READING: Proverbs 19-21