Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own insight. Proverbs 3:5
How confident I can be in my own ideas, plans and thoughts. How peeved I can become when someone questions me. True wisdom begins with turning to God and trusting God to lead us through the day. This means setting aside our own agendas and allowing God to bring us new thoughts, new ideas, and new plans—sometimes in the most surprising ways. Trusting the Lord with all our heart means letting go and allowing God room to work in our lives.
Prayer - Leading One, help me lay aside what I think I know and understand. Bring to me your insights and wisdom so that I can walk through this day in peace. Amen.
Written by Stacy Ikard, Senior Associate Pastor at WHPC
Honor the LORD with your substance, and with the first fruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. Proverbs 3:9–10
Read this one backwards. The images—jugs overflowing with wine, barns full of crops—are images of overwhelming abundance. That sounds promising! What creates such plentiful circumstances? Paradoxically, in God’s economy, we receive more when we give more away. The person who is truly rich has given her “first fruits”—her most, her best—to God. The person who is truly rich honors God with all he’s got. It’s likely—perhaps inevitable—that this approach will not generate material wealth for you or me. But there are better things than things, aren’t there?
Prayer - Creator God, all that we have, all that we are, and all that exists is yours. May we honor you today with our time, talents, and treasure. Embolden us to risk material wealth for true spiritual abundance. Amen.
Written by Claire Berry, Associate Pastor at WHPC
Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life. Proverbs 4:23
The Hebrew word used here for “keep” means to guard or protect. We are being challenged to protect our hearts, for it is from our hearts that our life is directed. In the Old Testament the heart is the seat of our emotions, our passions, our desires. How easy it is to let these things run wild, without care for self or others. If I am feeling angry, just give the silent treatment. If I am feeling discontent, just go buy something new. But this is not what God desires for us. God is calling us to check what is driving our hearts. Emotions and desires are gifts from God, but only when lived out in love. Let’s protect our hearts today by checking if our emotions are rooted in love. And if they are not, then to keep our hearts from them.
Prayer - Holy God, you have given us so many wonderful emotions that give us such abundant life. Help me to check my heart and keep my emotions in line with your love. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Written by Emily Wright, Senior Pastor at WHPC
Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Proverbs 4:24.
Ah, the mouth. And ouch—my mouth! Such a tiny part of the body that wields such great power. The “sticks and stones” rhyme to the contrary, words can hurt; a lot. We are here warned against perverse and corrupt speech. The Message translates this broadly as speaking out of both sides of the mouth, careless banter, white lies, and gossip. Can any of us honestly escape being convicted? The book of James has harsh words for the unbridled mouth: “wild and untamed, a wanton killer, a spark that sets forest fires, that itself is set on fire by Hell” (James 3:5-7). As one who talks a lot and often speaks before thinking of the possible harm my words might inflict, I might be crushed when looking at myself through this proverb. The truth, especially when applied to myself, sometimes hurts deeply. I might even despair were it not for Jesus, who not only forgives me when I confess, but is in the business of transforming me—and you—into His likeness. Big job, big God!
Prayer - My God, my Father, Transformer of sinners, thank you for loving me so much. Put a guard on my mouth and filter my words with your amazing love before they leave my lips. In the power of Jesus’ name, Amen.
Written by Nancy Kocurek, Elder at WHPC
Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Proverbs 4:25
In Proverbs there are only two paths: the wise or righteous path and the foolish or wicked path. There is no middle way, and we must choose our path. Walking that path is difficult. Life is difficult. My days are filled with attractive distractions or fearful concerns to draw my attention or to pull me off center. Frankly, I really can’t do it very well on my own. Fortunately, I don’t have to. The Good Shepherd is there to lead me in the right path. The Holy Spirit is ready to guide me, and will always be praying for me as I stumble or lose my way. So, each morning when I rise, each moment and encounter of the day, I have a choice to make—which path will I walk? You have that same choice—which path will you walk? As the distractions of the day bombard you, where will you go for the help to keep your eyes looking directly forward? As the pressures of the day mount, where will you go to draw the wisdom and the strength you need to stay the course? From the One who offers to share your burden? The One who restores your soul?
Prayer - Holy Spirit, fill my heart with the desire to will but one thing—to walk that right path in all things. Give my eyes the wisdom and discernment to not only see that path, but also all the false paths that rise before me. Give my feet the courage and strength to stay on that right path in the face of all else, for all my days. Amen.
Written by Drew Beckley, Elder at WHPC