(Prov 25:12 GNB) A warning given by an experienced person to someone willing to listen is more valuable than gold rings or jewelry made of the finest gold.
This morning we continue our series, “Unlocking the Power of Proverbs – Walking in the Wisdom of God.” This verse flows in the same vein as the last. Yesterday we learned that a divinely inspired, well-expressed, and timely delivered word is more precious than gold set in silver. Today we get a like proverb from Solomon, but this one is slanted towards correction. While most people like to hear encouraging, inspiring, uplifting, and comforting words, the truth is that we sometimes need words of correction and most of us are not quick to welcome them. However, when well delivered and well received, words of correction can have equally powerful results.
None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes and sometimes we don’t realize when we are in error. It is in these occasions, especially, that we need someone to care enough about us to share a word of warning/correction with us, in love, so that we can make the necessary change. Continuing down a mistaken path, without correction, can have catastrophic results. So prayerfully we have people around us who possess both the care and the courage to discuss with us the error of our ways.
It takes a mature person to get past the sting of correction long enough to see the benefits of it. And Solomon wants us to grow to this level, that is why he taught so much about it. In chapter three Solomon said, “Despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction” (v.11). In chapter 9 he said: “Never correct conceited people; they will hate you for it. But if you correct the wise, they will respect you. Anything you say to the wise will make them wiser. Whatever you tell the righteous will add to their knowledge” (verses 7-9). And in chapter 10 Solomon said, “The wise are glad to be instructed… a bold reproof promotes peace” (verses 8 and 10).
So what does this mean to you today? A few things:
1. There are times when we all need a word of warning/correction, because no matter how much we know, we don’t know it all and we all make mistakes.
2. A word of correction seasonably given, conceived in love, and designed for good, though it may be a little unpleasant at first, should be well received and applied. This is how we grow.
3. The Lord disciplines and corrects us BECAUSE He loves us. A true mark of maturity in Christ is understanding that fact and welcoming His chastisement and correction, even when it comes through the lips of another human being.
4. Be a lifelong learner. The day you stop learning is the day you stop growing, and the day you stop growing is the day you START dying.
Closing Confession: Father, I thank You for this Word. I am well aware of the fact that I do not know it all. I have made mistakes in the past and I know I will make mistakes in the future. I thank You for loving me enough to correct me and to provide me adequate warning when I go astray. I declare, by faith, that I will receive Your corrections when they come; even when they come through the lips of other human beings. I will not fight against the messenger, I will rather focus on and receive the message. As I apply the lessons I learn from the words of warning and correction You send my way, I will incrementally get closer to the person You desire for me to be. Growth requires change and I am willing to change, because I am determined to grow! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper!