As we dig into today's Proverb, let's reflect on the wisdom coming to us from Proverbs 24 in the Message Bible.
Vs.3-4. A house is built by wisdom and becomes strong through good sense. Through knowledge its rooms are filled with all sorts of precious riches and valuables.
What kind of a house are you building? A home takes time and effort to craft but it's worth it in the end. Think about the 'environments' you are creating – at home, at work, at church. Be an architect of places characterised by love, peace and joy.
Vs.5-6. The wise are mightier than the strong, and those with knowledge grow stronger and stronger. So don’t go to war without wise guidance; victory depends on having many advisers.
Who are your advisers? Who do you look to when you need guidance? Make sure you have a good team of wise people around you. You'll be glad you do.
Vs.10. If you fail under pressure, your strength is too small.
Someone once said, "Don't pray for an easy life; pray to be a strong person." Strength is developed under pressure – during times of adversity. May you have the inner strength of the Holy Spirit growing in your life so that it is much stronger than any external pressure you may face.
Vs.16. The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again. But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked.
Failure is NOT final. Fail forward. You may fail but you are not a failure. Live and learn. Rise again. You'll do better next time and be much wiser for the experience.
Vs.27. Do your planning and prepare your fields before building your house.
Do you take time to plan? Planning ahead on the front end saves heaps of time on the back end. Remember, "Ready, Set, Go." Don't go until you are ready and set. If we fail to plan we plan to fail.
Vs.30-34. I walked by the field of a lazy person, the vineyard of one with no common sense. I saw that it was overgrown with nettles. It was covered with weeds, and its walls were broken down. Then, as I looked and thought about it, I learned this lesson: A little extra sleep, a little more slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest—then poverty will pounce on you like a bandit; scarcity will attack you like an armed robber.
Balance your activity and rest. Avoid the extreme of the workaholism that violates the Sabbath principle and leads to burnout. Also avoid the laziness that so easily creeps in and leads to lethargy, indifference and mediocrity.