Monday, June 27, 2016 - Proverbs 16
Many of the proverbs in this chapter teach us about God’s sovereign control of all things. God is more in charge of our lives than many of us realize.
- Pray about your plans. God must be behind them if they are to succeed (v. 3). It is easy to think we determine our plans for the future. The truth is that unless God lines things up, our plans will not succeed. Talk to God in prayer about all your plans. Ask God to guide your heart to be in line with his will. Ask God to turn you away from any plans that are not pleasing to him. Ask God to give you the right plans to bring glory to his name. Don’t just plan. Pray and plan together.
- God has a purpose for everything, even for the wicked (v. 4). This is a verse that may challenge your theology. God has a purpose for everything, even for allowing evil to exist for a period of time. Why would God allow evil, Satan, sin and suffering to have temporary reign? The Bible tells us that for all of eternity the Lake of Fire will be a grand display of God’s fully deserved wrath. The Bible also tells us that for all of eternity Christians will be a grand display of God’s completely undeserved grace. The wicked exist to display God’s justice and Christians exist to display God’s undeserved mercy and grace. While we may not fully understand why God allows the temporary reign of evil and suffering, we can trust God’s wisdom and believe he has a good purpose behind it.
- Loyal love and faithful friendship restore a broken relationship over time (v. 6). Sinning against a friend breaks his or her trust. After a friend offers to forgive, there is still time needed to rebuild that trust. It takes loyal love over time to rebuild a friendship or a marriage after you sin. The good news is it can be rebuilt.
- Pride forecasts a fall like storm clouds forecast the weather (v. 18). It is a law in life. God humbles the proud. We see this all the time in the area of sports. The cocky athlete that proudly proclaims he is the best is humbled in the next football game. God, in his mercy, deflates our egos by allowing us to fail. Don’t think of yourselves as God’s gift to the world. Be a humble and think of yourself as a servant of others.
- We need to pray about our plans, asking for God to help us make the right choices. We never know enough about a situation to always make the right decision (v. 25). I really like this verse. There are things in life that seem easy. They appear obvious. In the end they lead to disaster. This reminds us of our need to pray about everything and ask God to help us make the right choices because without him stopping us it is so easy to make the wrong choices. Without God guarding our paths, we can easily find ourselves making decisions that lead to disaster. In every decision we don’t just need our wisdom, we need God’s wisdom to succeed.
- Nobody wins the lottery by chance (v. 33). We usually think of lottery winners as lucky. This verse reminds us nobody wins the lottery by accident. Every number drawn in Powerball is determined by God. Every roll of the dice at the casino is predetermined by God. Nothing happens by chance. God has all of life fully under his control. As you go through life and something unexpected happens, remember it didn’t happen by chance. God has a reason for it even if we can’t fathom why. It didn’t happen by chance.