My son, do not forget my law,
But let your heart keep my commands;
2 For length of days and long life
And peace they will add to you.
3 Let not mercy and truth forsake you;
Bind them around your neck,
Write them on the tablet of your heart,
4 And so find favor and high esteem
In the sight of God and man.
5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5-6). Note we’re exhorted to trust in God not only with our minds, but also with our hearts.
Proverbs 28:14 states it another way: “Blessed is the man who always fears the Lord, but he who hardens his heart falls into trouble.” Like King David, we’re to cultivate “a heart after God.”
The heart, according to the Bible, also is the seat of our motivations. Proverbs 17:3 declares, “The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart,” and Proverbs 21:2 adds, “All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the Lord weighs the heart.”
Yet another verse from the same book, Proverbs 4:23, offers this warning: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life.” We might paraphrase this to say, “Be careful about where we place our deepest affections, because those will impact the entirety of our lives.” -Bob Tamasy
Our propensity to trust in our own wisdom is often the reason we crash and burn. Let's acknowledge our need of God's wisdom and leadership today. He will lead us into our purpose. — Ken & Betty Eberly, Behold Your God Ministries
We may never understand all the “whys” of unanswered prayers or prayers that are not answered as we desire, especially those that seem right and good as far as we can see. But God’s Word calls us to “walk by faith (in God) and not by sight” (2 Corinthians 5:7). We are instructed to "Trust in the Lord in all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will make our path straight" (Proverbs 3:5-6). -Lisa Hannan
In Acts 23:1 the apostle Paul states that he had always “lived in all good conscience before God”. This is the same man who had severely persecuted the Lord’s church. Acts 8:3 tells us, “He made havoc of the church, entering every house and dragging off men and women, committing them to prison.” Paul admitted, “I persecuted this way to the death, binding and delivering into prisons both men and women.” (Acts 22: 4) When confronted by Christ, Paul was asked the question, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” (Acts 26:14) How could Paul have done these terrible things with a good conscience toward God? It is a fact that his conscience was clear. Paul thought he was doing the right things, but he was wrong because he was acting on information that was not true. The conscience must be educated with truth, before it can function properly. -Shane Hoover
For the better part of three weeks, ahead of another 14- or 15-hour day sitting inside Yakima Valley Memorial Hospital, Sharon Doornink would wake up early at her Yakima home and pack herself a light lunch – half a peanut butter sandwich and an apple most days.
That was enough to sustain her through the darkest days of her husband’s prolonged fight with COVID-19. That, and prayer.
“Lots and lots of prayer,” Sharon said.
There was one scripture she recited from memory to her husband, Dr. Dan Doornink, the Washington State University Hall of Fame running back and a stalwart Seahawks player in the 1980s, as he lay unconscious in intensive care. The verse, from Proverbs 3 (“Trust in the Lord with all your heart …”), had helped bring the couple together shortly after they met in biology class at Wapato (Washington) High School. Sharon was 14; Dan was 15.
He gifted her a Bible and scribbled that verse on the inside cover. They’ve been practically inseparable in the 50 years since. -Adam Jude
7 Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and depart from evil.
8 It will be health to your flesh,
And strength to your bones.
9 Honor the Lord with your possessions,
And with the firstfruits of all your increase;
10 So your barns will be filled with plenty,
And your vats will overflow with new wine.
11 My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,
Nor detest His correction;
12 For whom the Lord loves He corrects,
Just as a father the son in whom he delights.
Happy is the man who finds wisdom,
And the man who gains understanding;
14 For her proceeds are better than the profits of silver,
And her gain than fine gold.
15 She is more precious than rubies,
And all the things you may desire cannot compare with her.
16 Length of days is in her right hand,
In her left hand riches and honor.
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
And all her paths are peace.
18 She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her,
And happy are all who retain her.
19 The Lord by wisdom founded the earth;
By understanding He established the heavens;
20 By His knowledge the depths were broken up,
And clouds drop down the dew.
21 My son, let them not depart from your eyes--
Keep sound wisdom and discretion;
22 So they will be life to your soul
And grace to your neck.
23 Then you will walk safely in your way,
And your foot will not stumble.
24 When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
Yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet.
25 Do not be afraid of sudden terror,
Nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes;
26 For the Lord will be your confidence,
And will keep your foot from being caught.
Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
When it is in the power of your hand to do so.
28 Do not say to your neighbor,
“Go, and come back,
And tomorrow I will give it,”
When you have it with you.
29 Do not devise evil against your neighbor,
For he dwells by you for safety’s sake.
30 Do not strive with a man without cause,
If he has done you no harm.
31 Do not envy the oppressor,
And choose none of his ways;
32 For the perverse person is an abomination to the Lord,
But His secret counsel is with the upright.
33 The curse of the Lord is on the house of the wicked,
But He blesses the home of the just.
34 Surely He scorns the scornful,
But gives grace to the humble.
35 The wise shall inherit glory,
But shame shall be the legacy of fools.
Jesus clearly teaches that God honors humility and judges pride: “Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted” (Matt. 23:12). Both James (4:6) and Peter (1 Pet. 5:5) quote from the Greek version of Proverbs 3:34: “God resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.” As Christians, may we learn this valuable lesson to be “lowly and humble in heart” (Matt. 11:29).