Proverbs – Life Skills
There is a response we give when we agree wholeheartedly to what a person is saying as true. We simply say, “Word”. Our proverb today tells us that the right WORD at the right time is golden and fits like fine jewelry. I would add that our words spoken in the right Spirit, as the Holy Spirit leads, adds to “rightness”. When we suddenly belch out words that are led by immediate circumstance, angry, silliness, or any other unthinking moment, we mostly do harm.
I once read that a great disciple of Jesus is one who does what is right and that right moment and in the right Spirit. Solomon is telling his son to think about his words before he responds for that is wisdom. It’s as if God is leading Solomon in his words. (Smiling.)
How wise are we with our words? (Don’t answer out loud, we all suffer from this illness of word use.)
Solomon is also teaching us what good to great, God-led leadership looks like and how leaders should behave as Godly people. Then he really gets personal by telling us we must be self-controlled with our eating of sweets! This is a great remix of wisdom by Eugene Peterson that we can’t ignore, however.
Read. Reread. Repent. Move forward in wisdom.
Proverb 25, The Message
The Right Word at the Right Time
There are also these proverbs of Solomon,
collected by scribes of Hezekiah, king of Judah.
2 God delights in concealing things;
scientists delight in discovering things.
3 Like the horizons for breadth and the ocean for depth,
the understanding of a good leader is broad and deep.
4-5 Remove impurities from the silver
and the silversmith can craft a fine chalice;
Remove the wicked from leadership
and authority will be credible and God-honoring.
6-7 Don’t work yourself into the spotlight;
don’t push your way into the place of prominence.
It’s better to be promoted to a place of honor
than face humiliation by being demoted.
8 Don’t jump to conclusions—there may be
a perfectly good explanation for what you just saw.
9-10 In the heat of an argument,
don’t betray confidences;
Word is sure to get around,
and no one will trust you.
11-12 The right word at the right time
is like a custom-made piece of jewelry,
And a wise friend’s timely reprimand
is like a gold ring slipped on your finger.
13 Reliable friends who do what they say
are like cool drinks in sweltering heat—refreshing!
14 Like billowing clouds that bring no rain
is the person who talks big but never produces.
15 Patient persistence pierces through indifference;
gentle speech breaks down rigid defenses.
A Person Without Self-Control
16-17 When you’re given a box of candy, don’t gulp it all down;
eat too much chocolate and you’ll make yourself sick;
And when you find a friend, don’t outwear your welcome;
show up at all hours and he’ll soon get fed up.
18 Anyone who tells lies against the neighbors
in court or on the street is a loose cannon.
19 Trusting a double-crosser when you’re in trouble
is like biting down on an abscessed tooth.
20 Singing light songs to the heavyhearted
is like pouring salt in their wounds.
21-22 If you see your enemy hungry, go buy him lunch;
if he’s thirsty, bring him a drink.
Your generosity will surprise him with goodness,
and God will look after you.
23 A north wind brings stormy weather,
and a gossipy tongue stormy looks.
24 Better to live alone in a tumbledown shack
than share a mansion with a nagging spouse.
25 Like a cool drink of water when you’re worn out and weary
is a letter from a long-lost friend.
26 A good person who gives in to a bad person
is a muddied spring, a polluted well.
27 It’s not smart to stuff yourself with sweets,
nor is glory piled on glory good for you.
28 A person without self-control
is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out.
Dear Heavenly Father,
You are God and we are not. We fall down and make a mess with our words but Your Word picks us up, dusts us off and puts us back into play because of your love, mercy and grace. Thank you, Lord.
In Jesus Name, Amen