Christians want to know their purpose. They may want to have a ministry which can be seen in public. We all want purpose. However, God has given all Christians His purpose and wisdom for living everyday out in the Word of God. Proverbs 3 gives us insight on how the Lord wants us to live as Christians everyday. The benefits to this type of living are outstanding.
Remember God’s Teaching
“My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart,” (Proverbs 3:1, NIV). God has given us laws and commandments to follow. We need to keep them in the forefront of our minds. The commandments of the Bible are for our own good.
“. . . for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity” (Proverbs 3:2, NIV). In this, God or David? is not saying we will all live to be 100 years old. Rather, we will live peacefully and full of God’s best. This is a long blessed life, no matter how long you live on this earth.
Mercy and Truth
“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart” (Proverbs 3:3, NIV). It must be compassion that moves us to help someone else in need. God means what He says, He is trustworthy and truthful. His words and His deeds match up for good. We need to mean what we say and our actions need to match up. We must keep mercy and truth close to our heart, soul and mind and not forget them.
“Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man” (Proverbs 3:4, NIV). When we serve God in mercy and in truth, we will be blessed in the eyes of almighty God. When we reach out to one another in love, people take notice. They are moved by this compassion for each other. People are hungry for this in today’s world. When we mean what we say and follow up with actions to prove it, people will want what you have.
Depend on God Alone and Fellowship with Him
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him,” (Proverbs 3:5-6, NIV). Proverbs 3:5 and part of 3:6 have three commands in them. First of all, we need to trust in God for everything. One hindrance to this is when we look to ourselves for guidance. This will usually turn into disaster. We only have a minute understanding of our situation at hand. We may think we know better, but God has the best in mind for us. Seek God in prayer for every situation in your life. Finally, we must acknowledge Him in all our ways. To acknowledge God is to spend time in intimacy and fellowship with Him. God desires each child of His to have a personal, intimate relationship with Him. To do this, we must set aside time to spend in prayer and devotion to God.
“. . . and he will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:6, NIV). When we trust in God alone and set aside time to devote to God, God will direct us according to His will. When you are directed by God, you have a tremendous sense of relief. You are not carrying the load God never intended you to have. You can rest in knowing He has the best in mind for you.
Fear the Lord
“Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil” (Proverbs 3:7, NIV). The word, fear, is used in two contexts in the Bible. The first one meaning to be afraid. The Lord told His servants time and time again, do not fear. God wanted them to depend upon His strength and not their own. When they depended upon their on strength, evil prevailed and they were not successful. The second meaning of fear is to be in awe and reverence of the Lord. This is what is meant in Proverbs 3:7. We need to magnify the presence of the Lord. We serve the Lord with the awesome respect He deserves.
“This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones” (Proverbs 3:8, NIV). When we serve the Lord in awe and reverence, we depend upon Him. We do not carry the extra burden which arises with us carrying this all on our own. This can lead to stress and physical illness. God wants to lift that burden from us. In order to do so, we must let go and allow Him to do this. This leads to health and well-being.
Honor God by Giving Back to Him
“Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops;” (Proverbs 3:9, NIV). When I first heard the word tithe, I was skeptical. After all, I couldn’t afford it. However, I learned a valuable lesson. I gradually began to give 10% of my income. I was making a significant amount as a therapist and began to do so gratefully to the Lord. When I could no longer work and was placed on disability, I didn’t see how it was possible to continue tithing after I added up all of my bills.
“. . . then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine” (Proverbs 3:10, NIV). However, I chose to continue tithing and taking the 10% out first before anything else. When I did so, I somehow came through month after month with the money I needed to pay all my bills. I could NOT afford NOT to tithe. After I gave to God what was His first, He provided for my needs.
Listen and Obey
“My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline and do not resent his rebuke,” (Proverbs 3:11, NIV). If we do not listen to the correction of the Lord, we do not grow. We will fall back into our unruly patterns instead of going forward. God does not want this for His children. When we listen to His correction, we grow in our walk with Him.
“. . . because the Lord disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in” (Proverbs 3:12, NIV). Any parent can tell you how difficult it is to discipline his children. They always follow up with the correct statement, which is, “I did it for your own good because I love you.” Without this discipline, the child would grow up to be disrespectful and unruly. God disciplines us for our own good and because He loves us. He loves us too much to keep us as baby Christians.
God has given us the blueprint for living every day through His Word. In this way, we can have a sense of purpose in our everyday lives. When we follow through on these directions, we are blessed and we grow. We develop a closer walk with Him through Jesus Christ.