Proverbs 18:9 Not Working The Best Work

One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys. Proverbs 18:9

Working hard takes hard work and dedication, two characteristics that many people lack in. Although most people are dedicated to showing up for their job, most do not always give 100% of their efforts at the job.

Everyone knows of someone who slacks on the job. That job could be a paying job in the workforce or a volunteer job somewhere else. It is the person who stops and talks all the time, or has to use the restroom every few minutes. It is the person who does the job very slowly on purpose. It is the person who does not follow all the directions in getting the job done. There are many ways that a person can slack on the job.

Solomon likens this person to one who destroys. Some may ask how is that destroying anything, they are not physically hurting anyone or anything.

When a person does not give his all in work, he is destroying in several ways at a minimum. That person is destroying the integrity of the business–not giving the best service. Destroying the moral at work, because others see the slacking and join in it or they begin complaining. The personal integrity is destroyed by not doing what he says he is doing. It teaches those under a person to also cut corners and slack off on work.

Every job at you have and do you are to do it as unto the Lord with all of your heart. God did not do any slacking when He created you or this world. Jesus did not slack at all when He went through the process to provide salvation for your soul.

God is in the process of building a kingdom that will last forever. You have been asked to be a part of that building process. No matter what you do, you are in that process.

There will be days when you will be tempted to slack off and cut corners in your work. You will see others slacking off. Do not follow them. Follow the example of Jesus and keep working faithfully. God is looking for faithful servants who will do the work required.

Are you building?

Or are you slacking off and destroying?

I pray today that you will know the work God has for you to do; that you will work as unto God; that you will work with the integrity of God; and that God will give you strength to do the work needed to be done.

Proverbs 17:14 Stop And Drop It

Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out. Proverbs 17:14

Many people love to argue about their view with someone else who disagrees with them. Each person feels that they are right and that the other person must agree with them completely or he is a fool.

Take a look at how many news talk shows there are. Each one has different views on what should have happened or what should happen in the political realm of the news. Watch a sports game and the same thing occurs. The announcers of the game will argue points as to what should have been done or how the call should have been made. There are many other ways that people disagree and fight for their way.

Occasionally these disagreements will end in peace, but often they end up in a heated dispute. Words get said that are hurtful or wrong. Friendships are broken. And all of this because each person wanted his own way in what was being talked about.

Solomon likens it to breaching a dam. Breaching is breaking a hole in the wall of the dam. If a little hole is breached in a dam, the water will start pouring through. It will be extremely difficult to stop it, and it will quickly break the entire wall down, flooding and destroying the area. It is extreme foolishness to breach that wall.

In the same way continuing a quarrel or argument just to get your way, is destructive. Once you start, it will be extremely difficult to stop it.

So you need to stop and drop the matter as quickly as possible. Remember that Jesus did not argue or dispute with the soldiers or Pharisees as He was being placed on the cross. He allowed Himself to be wronged.

You do not always have to be right. And not everyone has to always agree with you. This is true whether you are right or wrong. Allow God to deal with the person if he is wrong. Love will cover the disagreement.

So stop and drop it today while there is time.

I pray today that you will love others as God loves them; that you will not keep a quarrel going; that God will strengthen you to hold your tongue and keep quiet; and that you will be an example of Jesus to this world.

Proverbs 16:9 Planning And The Actual Journey

In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps. Proverbs 16:9

Plans for traveling are made by people all the time. In the process of planning a major trip across the country, many decisions are made. Where to get gas, where to eat, where to stop for the night, which roads to take, and where to stop for a visit are just a few of the plans made.

These decisions are based off of many different reasons that each person must make for the trip being made. Cost factors, time to drive, distance, what the goal is, and other individual choices have to be made.

Once on the road, however, changes in the plans can easily occur. Vehicle break down, traffic accident, bad weather, and other incidents could occur that change the plans without personal desire.

In the same way, plans are made by people to travel through life. Plans to live in a certain area, or work a specific job, or get a type of college degree and the list goes on indefinitely. A lot of these start out when the person is in high school. Others are made later in life.

Very often those plans get changed, often due to circumstances beyond the control of the person. God will step into the picture and guide the person’s steps through this life. One plan that no person personally chooses is to have trouble or pain. Everyone wants to avoid all trouble if possible.

Yet, it is trouble that can help build a person stronger. God uses everything to build a person more like Jesus.

In your own life, God may have to use some trouble in order to get you to move to a new location in order to bring you a greater blessing. In the new location you may be able to do twice as much for God.

As you go through this life, you can make plans, but hold them loosely in your hands. Allow God to change them for your benefit. Allow God to establish your steps on the best path for the greatest journey through this life that is possible.

Trust God’s plans for your life, they will be the best. Your journey may not turn out as you planned, but it will be the best.

I pray today that you will know God’s guidance for your life; that you will stay on the path God wants you on; that you will not lose faith when God changes your plans; and that you will know and live the abundant life God has for you.

Proverbs 15:1 How To Answer Wrath

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

When a person is faced with an angry person, the first thing most people do is respond in anger. This becomes especially true if the person that is angry is doing it with wrath–extreme anger and violence.

Extreme anger and violence usually brings out anger and violence in other people. When a news reporter reports on a situation in which someone stated something in wrath or showed extreme violence, the people start talking about the situation with heated words of anger. They want to see justice done. Speaking like this brings out more anger, rather than a change of heart.

Parents are often seen speaking very harshly to a child who made a mistake and did something wrong. Doing this often brings out more anger in the child, rather than a change of heart.

People who are displaying wrath often feel that they are right and the world is wrong. Anyone who speaks harshly against them is wrong. As they are spoken to in that way, they put up a wall and strike even harder with their anger and wrath.

Solomon points out that speaking with a gentle answer gets the person to calm down from the extreme anger. Looking at the words of Jesus, He rarely ever spoke harshly with people. The only ones He spoke harshly with were the ones who claimed to be serving God, yet went against Him.

God shows love to every person. He speaks with a kind and gentle voice that is loving and forgiving.

Think about your own life. How do you react when someone speaks harshly with you? As with most people, you probably put up a wall and fight harder for your case.

When a person speaks gently to you, the fight in you will lessen and you will hear what is being said.

Is it right to be upset and angry with people who are doing wrong? Yes, but in the right way. Do not speak as the world does and just condemn the person. Show God’s love, grace and  mercy. Slow down and speak gentle words that will touch the heart and show them back to God.

How are your words being said today?

I pray today that you will have God’s love for all people; that God’s Spirit will keep you calm in every situation; that you will answer with the love and words of God; and that you will use gentle words to speak God’s truth to those speaking or acting in wrath and anger.

Exceedingly Growing Faith

Title: Exceedingly Growing Faith
Author:
 Kenneth E. Hagin
Publisher: RHEMA Bible Church
Date: 1983
Pages: 102

Faith is something that every believer knows about and wants. In this short, easy to read book, Kenneth talks about what faith really is.

He points out that often people feel as if they really do not have any faith and need to get some. It states in the Bible that every person is given a measure of faith by God. It is not something that a person needs to seek to find, but has to exercise what he has.

Kenneth uses a variety of examples from the Bible to show how people had faith to receive healing. Many scriptures are quoted throughout the book, instead of just being paraphrased.

Faith in the Bible was not just something believed in the heart. It was something that was spoken out loud and acted upon.

Jesus did not just pray quietly for a person to be healed, He spoke healing into the life of the person. It was the same way when God spoke the earth into existence. Words have a powerful impact in the life of a person, both positively and negatively. This is where faith comes in. Speaking God’s words into your life, as fact, brings about His power.

My favorite quote of this book is: “The God-kind of faith is the kind of faith in which a man: (1) believes in his heart, and (2) says with his mouth what he believes in his heart, and (3) it comes to pass.” (page 96)

I recommend this short book to read. It will help you see what faith really is and how to apply it in your life. I enjoyed the amount of scripture used. There are very few pages that does not have at least one verse quoted. It is short enough to read in just a few days, if you take your time and are a slower reader.

Proverbs 14:23 Work Versus Talk

All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads only to poverty. Proverbs 14:23

It can be easily seen that hard work will usually bring about a profit for a person. Being dedicated to the job and getting the job done in the best way possible, will allow a person to get promoted to a better position with better pay.

Those who do not work or do not work hard, fall into poverty. This will include people who do work, but do the absolute minimum work possible. They try to cut the corners to get out of working hard. Doing this will keep the employer from giving any pay raises or promotions and will keep them in poverty. They only talk the talk.

Looking at hard work and the rate of pay is the most common way to look at this verse. However there is the spiritual realm of a person’s life to be looked at.

In the same way that people refuse to work hard at their job, there are many people who refuse to work hard on their spiritual growth. Becoming a Christian believer in Jesus is very easy to do. Growing and maturing in Jesus is another thing. It is something that takes hard work and dedication.

Paul said in Philippians 2:12, to work out your salvation with fear and trembling. He told Timothy to fight the good fight and to take captive every thought. You are also told to put on the full armor of God so that you can fight the battle.

Each of these verses show that you must work hard. It is a battle to control your thoughts. It is hard work to fight against the schemes of the devil in this world. It takes dedicated focus to flee all sin.

If you are faithful in working hard at growing and maturing in Jesus, God will ensure you success and profit in the spiritual realm. You will hear the voice of God and God will do great things in and through you.

If you slack on it and do the minimum, you will be in spiritual poverty. You will not hear God’s voice and He will be unable to do great things in and through you.

Do not just talk about being a Christian, work at it and be one.

How hard are you working today?

Are you giving it your all?

Or are you doing just the minimum?

I pray today that God will show you areas to work harder at in your life; that you will dedicate your life to being like Jesus; that you will make every effort to grow in God; and that God will give you great spiritual success in this life.

Proverbs 13:8 The Curse Of Great Wealth

A person’s riches may ransom their life, but the poor cannot respond to threatening rebukes. Proverbs 13:8

Gaining great wealth is the focus of many people. The desire to have more money in order to have more things and be able to do more is what many want. There are some who want it just to have a large bank account.

In order to get that extra wealth, there will be some who will get an extra job and study books or articles that tell how to get that money. They will go to great lengths in order to have all that they want.

Solomon says that having all that wealth can ransom a person’s life.

Having great wealth sounds great on the surface, but many do not see the problems that come with having that wealth. Once a person has great wealth, he has to protect and keep what he has. This can cause the wealth to become a curse for him.

The person who is driving a ten year old Chevy car will not attract the attention of a car thief like the one who is driving a brand new high-end Mercedes. The person with a huge bank account will not attract all the “friends” who would like some of that money in either begging for it, or by lawsuits. The person with a small two room, empty, run-down house will not attract the thieves as much as the one with a mansion with a large flat-screen tv in each room.

Those with little to no physical wealth do not have the worries and cares that those with great wealth do. Yet, they can have great wealth in a different form. The wealth of the poor can be in having a close family, no worries of theft, joy in life, and reliance on the presence of God.

There is nothing sinful about having great physical wealth, nor is there anything sinful about being physically poor. The important thing is that God is the center of your life. Seek Him and what He wants and desires.

Learn to be satisfied with what God has already blessed you with. Do not strive after greater wealth as the world does. You may get it, but then have the concerns and fears the wealthy have. God may give you great wealth, or He may not, but trust in God, not the wealth.

I pray today that God will bless your life; that you will see how God is already blessing you; that you will trust in God and not things; and that you will see how wealthy you are in God.