The scripture reading for today is Proverbs 2: 1-15.
1 My child, if you accept my words and treasure up my commandments within you, 2 making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; 3 if you indeed cry out for insight, and raise your voice for understanding; 4 if you seek it like silver, and search for it as for hidden treasures – 5 then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God. 6 For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding; 7 he stores up sound wisdom for the upright; he is a shield to those who walk blamelessly, 8 guarding the paths of justice and persevering the way of his faithful ones. 9 Then you will understand righteousness and justice and equity, every good path; 10 for wisdom will come into your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul; 11 prudence will watch over you; and understanding will guard you. 12 It will save you from the way of evil, from those who speak perversely, 13 who forsake the paths of uprightness to walk in the ways of darkness, 14 who rejoice in doing evil and delight in the perverseness of evil; 15 those whose paths are crooked, and who are devious in their ways.
You might have heard my Mission Moment (small talk during our mid-January church services) focused on one of our 2020 Strategic Priorities: Enhance Communication. In the talk I briefly mentioned a few things I’ve learned about communication over the years (see bolded words below). Little did I know the Bible verse at the center of my devotion today would be so integrally connected:
· Attitude can affect communication. Sometimes our attitude is that of a prisoner; sometimes a vacationer; sometimes an adventurer. It seems this entire passage cries out for us to take on the attitude of an adventurer.
· The two most important types of communication in the Bible are our communication with God and our communication with each other. In this passage we are given steps to take when we communicate with God … receiving “wisdom, knowledge and understanding”.
· When you unscramble the word LISTEN you get the word SILENT … being silent allows us to improve our ability to listen. Verse 2 emphasizes this point: “making your ear attentive”.
· When it comes to trusting & believing what someone says … 55% of trust and believability is based on the visual (actions/behaviors); 38% is based on the vocal (tone/inflection); 7% is based on the verbal (words). In verses 10-15 we read about those we should not trust and actions we should not follow: “for wisdom … knowledge … and understanding will guard you. It will save you from the way of evil … and those whose paths are crooked, and who are devious in their ways.”
Dear God, help us as we listen to you throughout the day! In your Son’s name we pray. Amen!
Prayer Concern: For ALL of us to really LISTEN (be SILENT) as we hear, read, observe God working in our lives.