This is our verse..
So how do we practically apply it?
- There are three distinct ways to be blessed so we will break them down.. But first lets think about what this means to us.. God our loving heavenly father cared enough to share with us a "Way to be blessed!" Doesn't that just tickle your heart? From way up in heaven We must literally be as small as an ant is to those flying from a 747.. Virtually invisible yet he loves us enough to make ways for us to be blessed.. And then cares even more to share those ways with us so we aren't just groping around in hopelessness trying to happen upon them! To me that is fabulous!
- First blessing comes from not walking in the council of the Ungodly.. Now think about this for a second. Why would the council of an ungodly person be bad for us? Lets put this into perspective. For Husbands and Wives.. What is it like when your Unsaved loved ones start giving you marital advice.."Don't let him tell you what to do!" "Why you allowing her to get way with that?"
~Doesn't it stress you out?
~Doesn't it put pressure on you to act in a way different than what you personally have been choosing to do?
Now look at it in times past.. When you were a young person.. "Its OK your mom won't know that your sneaking to the mall instead of being in class" or "It isn't really stealing when you know that they pad the books and sell things at a mark up" And even "Who's ever going to know if you have that beer right now? I won't tell"
~Think of all the things that we as humans get talked into doing by those who are UNGODLY?!
~Think of all the pressures this world gives to us.. In the form of Words.. Why not, Why can't you, Who says... The list is endless
~I have a brother who is an atheist.. And he all the time asks.. So your big sky monster in the sky is telling you how to live again??
I love some of these people.. It's not that I want them to think bad of me.. So often I feel torn.. about giving their suggestions a try..
But I have done that enough to know I am so much HAPPIER when I obey God and his word.. That is where the blessings are.. Under the spout where Jesus can give me the rewards of OBEDIENCE..
- Second Blessing comes from not standing in the path of sinners.. This one is pretty cut and dry.. The path of the sinner is usually the places where they go to sin.. EX: Bars, Strip Clubs.. And yes.. Even the path to the INTERNET.. Hey half the men in American Churches are snared in pornography.. OUR GOD knows that we as sinful man will be drawn to sin if we are walking the same paths as the sinners are!
~Our God offers us a blessing for steering clear of sinful places.. that sinful people go..
- Third Blessing comes from not sitting in the seat of the scornful... Heaven knows this is where my biggest trials and tribulations come! I tend to sit with the gossips.. I tend to like to know what is going on.. I tend to want to hear all sorts of things.. But then it causes horrible things..
~Smug attitudes (Ha I am better than that person)
~Bitterness against the brethren
And I have found out that to my shame.. I am so prone to these things.. And you know why?
Proverbs 31:10-31 (KJV)10 Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
11 The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
12 She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
13 She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
14 She is like the merchants' ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
15 She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
16 She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
17 She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
18 She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
19 She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
20 She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
21 She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
22 She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
23 Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
24 She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
25 Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
26 She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
27 She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
29 Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
30 Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.
31 Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.
I will be honest.. I so often feel like I will never measure up.. So gossiping about another persons faults.. failings.. mistakes.. Makes me feel bigger.. Even though.. Really it the smallest part of me that is seeking to be made greater..
Ultimately I had to learn.. and am still striving for mastery in this area.. But striving to realize that it takes a big woman to lift another woman up.. It is a terribly small, cold, callous woman to tear another woman down. I mean we all have so many stresses and difficulties to live with.. Parenting, Submitting to our husbands, Obeying all of the council of Gods word.. And that's not even counting things like cleaning our homes, keeping all the bills paid etc.. Stresses and strains abound and yet here we are ripping each other apart..
God offers a blessing for NOT doing that.. Don't sit down with these kinds of people.. And watch your self esteem grow from watching your words HEAL NOT HURT..