“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight”. Proverbs 3:3-6
The above proverb seems so obvious, so simple when we first read it. Let love and faithfulness never leave you? Of course we don’t want love to leave us. Trust God? Seems pretty basic. Acknowledge God in everything? Sounds like a safe plan to me. Can’t really go wrong with this advice can we? Problem is, life tends to work out differently doesn’t it? Despite our desires to have love, it seems so often to slip through our fingers. Despite our desires to trust God, it is a lot harder then it first seems. Maybe that’s why the author encourages us to bind love and faithfulness around our neck. To write it upon our hearts. To do what we must so that these things are forefront in our lives. The first thing anyone might notice when they see us. As we dig deeper into these verses, I notice that there are two rewards listed, if we follow this advice. 1) Favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. 2) Having God make straight out paths for us. Sounds like something we all want. Something we long for as humans. Acceptance, respect from others, and God working to smooth out our life’s difficulties. In fact, we tend to want these things so much that we focus more on the rewards, instead of the advice on how to get them. For example, respect and acceptance from others is something we all strive for, sometimes we are even consumed with it. But how often do we take the time to focus instead on binding ourselves to love and faithfulness, and allow the acceptance and respect we covet to simply be a by-product. I think the key here is to let go of trying to earn acceptance and respect. To let go of trying to make our own life straight, and instead focus on love, faithfulness, and trust. Make developing these three things the priority in our lives. Make these things what we strive for most, and allow God to do the rest. This is difficult. Largely because looking out for ourselves and our own self-interests is so ingrained in us we can’t hardly think otherwise. We need to choose to change the way we think, react, speak, and make choices. We can start by acknowledging God in everything we do, then move on to making sure that love and faithfulness are the key characteristics of our relationships. If we do that, I think the trusting in God will develop naturally. Leading to some pretty amazing rewards.
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