SAY WHAT? (What is the passage saying?)
- As with several previous chapters in Proverbs, today's reading talks about how difficult the life of a fool is. The writer warns of the pitfalls of foolishness to drive the reader to strive for wisdom.
- Verse 11 is a great reminder for us to keep away from repeating the same failures over and over again.
- Verse 13 kind of funny, but true. A lazy person always makes up excuses not to work; excuses as silly as, “there’s a lion in the street!”
- Verse 20 is the perfect description of how gossip only fuels the flames of an argument.
SO WHAT? (What are the underlying principles?)
- Laziness can be appealing, but we need to guard against it. We should make sure we are proactive in our relationship with God and our relationships with other people.
- Gossip is salacious, but it's silly. The more we avoid participating in gossip, the easier it will be to live the life God has for us.
NOW WHAT? (How will you personally apply this passage?)
- Do you tend to be lazy? Pick one area of your life and commit to fight against laziness. If you're lazy in your friendships, text a friend right now and make plans to spend time with them this week. If you're lazy in your finances, set aside time this week to budget and figure out how you can arrange your finances in a more God-honoring way. If you're lazy in your spiritual life, set a daily alarm to remind you to talk to God for five minutes every morning. Small habits can lead to big changes.
- The next time you're in a conversation where someone starts gossiping, redirect the discussion. Instead of heaping insults on the person being talked about, compliment them. If all else fails, change the subject to something productive.