Tam - posted on 04/21/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )
Today's selection is Proverbs 2. This chapter is dedicated to the benefits of wisdom. Let's read...
1My son, if thou wilt receive my words, and hide my commandments with thee; 2So that thou incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding; 3Yea, if thou criest after knowledge, and liftest up thy voice for understanding; 4If thou seekest her as silver, and searchest for her as for hid treasures; 5Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. 6For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. 7He layeth up sound wisdom for the righteous: he is a buckler to them that walk uprightly. 8He keepeth the paths of judgment, and preserveth the way of his saints. 9Then shalt thou understand righteousness, and judgment, and equity; yea, every good path. 10When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; 11Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; 13Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; 14Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked; 15Whose ways are crooked, and they froward in their paths: 16To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; 17Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God. 18For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. 19None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the paths of life. 20That thou mayest walk in the way of good men, and keep the paths of the righteous.21For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it. 22But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.
To me, these verses reiterate the first chapter, to lean to God's wisdom and direction in all things so we won't be led astray.
And, once more we are given a warning of the consequence for not seeking the Lord and His wisdom. God wants to make sure we know beyond a shadow of doubt that following Him will lead to peace and that life without Him may provide some limited fleshly satisfaction but will end in our own willful, selfish destruction.
Verse 7 says that He is a "buckler" if we walk uprightly. Merriam-Webster defines a buckler as a 1 a: a small round shield held by a handle at arm's length b: a shield worn on the left arm or 2: one that shields and protects.
How foolish would we be to leave protection behind? There is not other greater source of protection than our Lord! God is our shield against the trials and tribulations that come our way.
I personally think that a lot of people think this means that the Lord will take away some of our trials and tribulations. To me, this definition, shows me that the shield is used in battle, that we most certainly will come across trials and tribulations, and they will not only come at us, but face to face, up close and personal. But with our Buckler, God Almighty, we can protect ourselves from the dangerous barbs of the battle. He will protect the vital parts of His children. He will help us deflect the arrows and though we might take a beating, we will live in Him. I also believe that without trials and tests and tribulations we cannot grow in Him. I believe He knows this and that's why He's provided us with the tools and spiritual weapons to overcome.
When we seek after Him and His wisdom, we are protected. Our peace and joy may become tarnished in battle, but He gives us protection and rest to reshine and restore. He so awesomely provides for all of our needs when we seek after Him!
Sadly though, like Jennifer said in her post on a previous daily study, it is often that we ignore God. We don't always intentionally seek to follow the world's counsel but in ignoring God we leave ourselves open to the world's wisdom. And as a loving Father, He shows us again what is in store when we don't heed His instruction. He tells us about the ways of evil men and women and how they lead to destruction. He loves us so much that once more He shows us the consequences and tells us, "the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it." I don't know about you, but for me the worst thing in this life (and eternity) would be to cut out of God's plan, to not be privileged to praise Him.
It reminds me of being a mom and how we sometimes have to constantly "warn" our children to not do something (or do it, in some cases). Your children will do things that try you, they will ignore you, they will test you to your limits. You want so much for them to succeed and grow up healthy and wise and you share the wisdom you have gained and hope they will heed it. You show them how to live, how to love.
You invest a lot of your being into it and still they want to do their own thing.
They don't want to wear the red shirt that matches, they want to wear the green plaid one (forget that it clashes with their striped pants) and will throw a tantrum to do it. Or, they want to hang out with unsavory characters which opens the door for them to experiment with rebellion or drugs, etc. You pray to God and ask for patience and love as you guide them toward the things of God. It's not always easy and there have been many battles. You want to cry, you want to rant, you want to pull your hair out of it's Clairol-colored roots! (At least in my place, lol)
Praise God that His love is boundless and limitless! He doesn't give up on us. He loves us and continues to discipline and demonstrate His love when we fall, and protects us in the shelter of Him when we need it. He is the ultimate "good" parent! He is the example we should all seek after and strive to follow.
Someone on another group (in another board, not Circle) asked how can Christians believe that God is truly a loving God because He will not save everyone and that bad things happen. They cannot see that our Father is even more than fleshly parents. They either don't understand or refuse to acknowledge that along with free will God constantly gives us warnings, He's given us His Word (Bible) and He's given us His Son! Just like a parent who sets consequences for bad behaviors and disciplines that child, God does with us.
It's when we decide that we don't need God's direction or we ignore the instruction He grants that we must accept the discipline.
However, if we sow daily prayer, daily study of His Word and strive to live life serving Him, we reap knowledge and wisdom. When things are hard, we know that we have a rock to hide in, a shelter from the storm. We have a Father who knows what we are going through and will love us through it.
Lord, we Praise You. We thank you for your loving discipline when we stray or ignore Your wisdom. You tell us that if we seek we shall find. Father, we seek You in midst of all life gives us. We desire to draw near to you and love what you love. We want to walk where you direct. Please open our eyes when we might be falling astray and guide us back to the heart of You. You are the most High and more precious than any temptation that is offered. We love you and praise you. In Jesus' name we pray, Amen.