April 24 - Proverbs 24
By Pastor Scott
If you faint in the day of adversity, Your strength is small. (Proverbs 24:10 NKJV)
Let me ask you a question. What comes out when a sponge is squeezed?
The answer is; whatever the sponge has absorbed. Let me come back to this image shortly.
We are all going to experience days of adversity in our lives. Distress, tribulation, trouble, anguish are all used to describe that word adversity.
The question is, what does our faith look like when it happens?
Do you fall (“faint”) or do you stand?
Look what verse 16 says in this same chapter:
For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity. Proverbs 24:16 NKJV
So, let me ask in more personal terms, what happens when our lives are squeezed? What comes out?
Again, it depends on what we are putting in.
If we consider our lives to be a house (or the temple of God), how do we build it? What do we allow inside?
Proverbs 24:3-4 NKJV
(3) Through wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established;
(4) By knowledge the rooms are filled With all precious and pleasant riches.
If we put junk into our houses and the house is turned upside down. That’s what’s going to come out.
A small example of this in action: if you watch lots of R rated movies that have foul language in them, then the next time you hit your hand with a hammer, what comes out is probably going to be some of what you put in.
Something else I want to point out here: The way verse 10 speaks is that the ‘day of adversity’ did not make your strength small, it revealed your strength to be small.
Challenge yourself today on what things you are letting in to dwell. Will they benefit you in the days of adversity? Do they strengthen the inner man?
I have emphasised a few words from Colossians 3 to remind us that we need to actively pursue these things:
Colossians 3:8-17 NKJV
(8) But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.
(9) Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds,
(10) and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,
(11) where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.
(12) Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering;
(13) bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
(14) But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.
(15) And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.
(16) Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
(17) And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.