Who thinks that they can actually learn something new today?
And who ever thought that it could come from an old book of fables or myths and legends?
It just might, and you better believe it.
The Holy Bible
Some people regard the bible a fantasy book. Others see it as a guide to living or a moral compass. Some regard it as entirely true and call it the gospel-truth.
But whatever you may think of it, it does not change the fact that this old collection of books is a treasure trove of knowledge and understanding — but only if you read it for yourself. People will say what they want to say about this book but don’t let their own theories cloud yours before you even read one single book from it.
New Day, Same Old Problems
Troubles, we all have them, some more than others and of course in various degrees of troublesomeness.
Some handle it quite well and others, let’s just say not so good.
But for many centuries, there has been a constant source of strength and wisdom. And it is still available to anybody who may want to “learn” from it. Today, it’s available 24/7. There are apps for it, you can listen to and view videos of it online, through radio stations and television programs or on CDs and DVDs. Or you can get it the old fashioned way. You can read them off the pages of a copy of the book which is probably the most widely printed of all time — the Holy Bible.
And you can start with reading just one proverb a day. You can find them in many of the 66 books that make up the entire bible. And none more so than in the Book with the same name, the Book of Proverbs.
The Book of Proverbs
Here are a few which you can start today with, all bible texts are taken from the New International Version unless indicated otherwise.
Proverbs 3: 11-12
My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke, because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.
If you have ever wondered if there is a Creator-God who made everything, including us and we are not products of mere cosmic accidents, then how do you suppose the Creator can communicate with his created beings?
Well one weird way is for him to make a statement is to be like us and talk to us through relationships which we can readily understand.
He then referred to the Creator side of him (he can have many sides or facets of course, if he is God) as our Father (in a way that is who he is to us), to the relational side (something we can easily relate to) he gave us something to physically see, hear and touch, Jesus (his Son), he was a real man who lived around 1 AD and to the spiritual or supernatural side of him, he gave us the Holy Spirit.
If you go back to read this text, you can relate the times when your father (or mother) have disciplined you when you were younger (and for some of us it was physically painful), and you can relate those “hard” times to what you might be going through right now [put your present trouble here].
And then you can say that my Father (in heaven) loves me enough to disciple me. And we do know now when we are a lot older that our folks or most parents really mean well when they discipled us but we really couldn’t see how or why at the time. Sometimes we do finally understand them when we do find ourselves disciplining our own children. And of course our kids hate us for that. But then the cycle continues.
“Stolen water is sweet; food eaten in secret is delicious!” But little do they know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of the grave.
We may not believe in God, or in the same god for that matter, but many of us believe in karma or the laws of cause and effect. You do something “good” you get something good in return.
And when you do something “bad”, well it will feel “good” at first, even great. But in the end the “bad karma” will catch up with us no matter how fast we run or how good we hide. We just have to remember that some “joys” in life are but temporary even short-lived, especially if it has been taken or received using unjust means.
Proverbs 11: 15
He who puts up security for another will surely suffer, but whoever refuses to strike hands in pledge is safe.
For good measure it was repeated in
Proverbs 22: 26-27
Do not be a man who strikes hands in pledge or puts up security for debts; if you lack the means to pay, your very bed will be snatched from under you.
In our present day terms, this passage is referring to co-signing a loan. Definitely these proverbs (which by the way were written thousands of years ago) are not saying that we should not co-sign or guarantee a loan for a family member, a relative or a close personal friend. But it does give you a perspective before you actually do sign your name on the dotted lines.
If anything, if you have the actual liquid means to help out a relative or a friend, then just give them the money and forget about being repaid back. If they insist in paying you back then that’s extra money for you to enjoy or to bless somebody else with. But if you definitely don’t have the means and you know the other party is in the same boat or even worse off, then learn to say no.
For some of us, how we would have loved to have somebody tell us about these verses a long time ago. Yes, if we knew then what we know now, and this line just feels like a broken theme of our very existence.
Better a meal of vegetables where there is love than a fattened calf with hatred.
Having a healthy lifestyle, going green, being a vegetarian or a vegan, these are some of the in things today.
But this is not what this passage is trying to tell us. What this proverb means is that even though we eat food that we can have for free or for a cheaper price but there is love, peace and joy in our homes, this is far more better to have than having steaks, seafood, exotic foods and all the expensive trimmings and we live in a roof where every member of the family members thinks ill of each other.
Lastly, Proverbs 22: 24-25
Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.
All self-explanatory I suppose. Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are. Some of us don’t think twice about associating with certain kinds of people. And most times we run with the in crowd. But remember, if you wake up one day asking yourself who you have turned out to be. Then just look at your constant companions and those you hang out with and you’ll get your answer. If that’s not who you are, then go find another group of people to hang out with, even if it means being uncool or disliked for it. Be yourself.
Remember there are so many other proverbs in the bible and as I said you can practically read one a day. And you can even read the same ones after a few months and get something new off of it. And it’s all free. Make it a habit today. You don’t have to be religious to do this. And you don’t even have to tell any of your friends, for they might just think you’re weird.
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