Getting Back Up

Have you had a tough night at the track? It is always good to get back to the track. It is kind of like falling off the bike or a horse when you are young. It is best to get back on the bike or horse as soon as you can. As we have gone through chapter 10 and headed into chapter 11 you might feel the same way. You might think you fall way short, sin and the enemy wants you to just give up but God wants you to get back up and keep working on living holy.

Let’s look at some more verses together.

Proverbs 11:1 A false balance is an abomination to the Lord, but a just weight is his delight.
Again God wants us to be honest in what we do. If we are selling 10 pounds of corn seed it should not be 9 pounds 10 ounces. It should be 10 pounds. If we say we are going to do something. We need to do it. God still has not changed His mind on honesty.

Proverbs 11:2 When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.
Do you think honesty is a big deal to God? Well being humble and not prideful is a really big deal to God. What would you say on the question, “How am I doing in the area of pride?” This is worth taking some more time to have God look into your heart.

Proverbs 11:3 The integrity of the upright guides them, but the crookedness of the treacherous destroys them.
Four times in Psalms and five times in Proverbs God is going to talk on integrity. I would say that is enough to call it important to the LORD. Look at the comparison – guides them vs. destroys them? Yet far too often integrity is just a word to us instead of a life style. How are you doing at living with integrity as God would measure integrity?

Proverbs 11:4 Riches do not profit in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death.
I like how the NIV states it, “Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath”. We talk about being blessed in the USA. What we really mean is we are filthy rich. That by no means makes us blessed. What makes a person blessed is humbleness and living a righteous life. How are you doing at living righteously?

Proverbs 11:5 The righteousness of the blameless keeps his way straight, but the wicked falls by his own wickedness.
God is laying it out pretty clear that those who live for self are not going to end up with a good outcome. Here the call continues to live blamelessly. Does that mean you are not going to sin? NO! No one goes even a day without sin. The Bible is clear that we sin and will continue to sin but the blameless person is the one that confesses sin, repents of sin and does not go out with the intent to sin. You CANNOT calculate sin saying oh, I will just do this sin and then confess and repent and it will be ok. That does not work. That will lead to a stronghold and the enemy taking MORE ground in your heart and life. Stop and really think about that because I think that is a big problem in the church. So is your life characterized by wickedness or righteousness? Blameless or wicked?

Proverbs 11:6 The righteousness of the upright delivers them, but the treacherous are taken captive by their lust.
Talk about big problems in the church, here is another. We hear of leaders who fall into relationships that lead to the destruction of their ministry and a church. We had dozens of verses earlier in Proverbs on lust of the flesh and a lot of warnings. Are you upright or captive of lust?

I hope you are enjoying this study. I know I am. It is not easy to have God scrape away sin but it is best and good in the end and for the end goal of living unto the LORD. I hope this week you can take some intentional time to have God example your honesty, your integrity, your faithfulness. Remember we want to see sin in the mirror not thinking hope the guy next to me gets this. So go back and look at the verses and ask God to deal with me.

Have a great day racin’ in the SONshine. I look forward to seeing you soon at a local race track.

Todd

Is This True About You?

First, our condolences go out to Sam Bartus’ friends and family. Mr Bartus had a huge impact on racing in Wisconsin. I pray that God bring comfort to Sam’s family and friends.

Testing, that word could mean a lot of different things to different people. Ask a teenager that and they probably recoil as they think of school and having to take a test. Ask a race car driver and they probably have a different reaction. Testing can be a good way to learn. The teenager or school testing is a good way to see what they know and don’t know. A driver and team testing does have a cost but is the cost worth it to improve and extra knowledge? Well, God likes for us to be tested too. Psalm 26:2 Test me, O LORD, and try me, examine my heart and my mind; (NIV). How do you feel about taking a test right now? Let’s do it and let’s be honest and let’s see what areas we need to repent in. It is a good thing.

Proverbs 10:24 What the wicked dreads will come upon him, but the desire of the righteous will be granted.
One thing that you see in the righteous is humbleness. They live out what is right and what is godly. Is that statement truth about you?

Proverbs 10:25 When the tempest passes, the wicked is no more, but the righteous is established forever.
Another thing we see in the righteous is a view of eternity in their heart and lives. Do you have an eternal view of life? What are you focused on?

Proverbs 10:26 Like vinegar to the teeth and smoke to the eyes, so is the sluggard to those who send him.
Think of how much discomfort those two are. It is not the best feeling. God is looking for the one that is steady and righteous, the one that can be counted on. Can you be counted on?

Proverbs 10:27 The fear of the Lord prolongs life, but the years of the wicked will be short.
Remember back in Proverbs 1 and 2 and 3 and 8 and 9. I am smiling right now because you all know what I think of the echo principle. We are here again thinking about the fear of the LORD. A reverence, an awe, a fear of what God could do if He wanted to, an acknowledgement of our unworthiness. Again we are not talking about length of time on earth but the opportunity to turn to God for salvation and to be able to worship God. Is the statement true that you fear the LORD?

Proverbs 10:28 The hope of the righteous brings joy, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.
Read that one again! Think of the dichotomy. You have hope on one side and perishing on the other yet billions, yes that it “b” as in billions, choose to perish. Why? Pride, self, I can do this on my own, it is the easy way… Is it true that you have hope and joy?

Proverbs 10:29 The way of the Lord is a stronghold to the blameless, but destruction to evildoers.
We have talked about strongholds. Often when I talk about strongholds I am talking in the negative way but look at this. God is talking on the positive side of having the LORD a stronghold for you. Who or what has a hold, a stronghold on you?

Proverbs 10:30 The righteous will never be removed, but the wicked will not dwell in the land.
God speaks here from an Israel prospective. God gave Israel a land, a nation. We do not want to be on the wrong side of that. Are you righteous?

Proverbs 10:31 The mouth of the righteous brings forth wisdom, but the perverse tongue will be cut off.
What is coming out of your mouth? You know that is what is in your heart. We have talked about that. Worth going back to, Matthew 15:18-19a 18 But what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this defiles a person. 19 For out of the heart come…. What is coming out of you mouth and your heart?

Proverbs 10:32 The lips of the righteous know what is acceptable, but the mouth of the wicked, what is perverse.
The word “know” is worth stopping and thinking of. We know in our heart what is right and what is wrong. We know but the question is will we acknowledge the truth. Are your thoughts, heart, acceptable to the LORD?

Have you taken some time and really asked God to examine your heart and life? I would ask that you take some time and get quiet before the LORD and see if there is some needed business to be done. I guarantee if you get serious about seeing sin in the mirror and asking God to show you and help you that great things will happen. I also know that the enemy will attack so let me know so that I can be praying for you.

Have a great day racin’ in the SONshine. I look forward to seeing you soon at a local race track.

Todd

Are you Rich?

Do you get annoyed by being told over and over what the rules are? Are you one of those who needs to be reminded often what the rules are? Do you tune out the race director when he talks about the rules? You could easily do that in this part of Proverbs as God comes back to the same subject matter again. He wants to deal with money and our words. They both come out of our heart so that is why it is so important and why I think God repeats Himself so much in Proverbs. I am ok with it. How are you doing with it?

Proverbs 10:15, 16, 22  A rich man’s wealth is his strong city; the poverty of the poor is their ruin. The wage of the righteous leads to life, the gain of the wicked to sin.  The blessing of the Lord makes rich, and he adds no sorrow with it.

Can you believe it? Echo continues. Hope you can stay with me. God has something to teach us. Listen to the words God uses for the ones not handling money well – ruin, sin. Do you want that or do you want the words He uses for those following Him – life, strong, blessed. The thing most essential to remember as we think about and as we spend is that all money is God’s and He gives it to us to use for His glory and use. Test – if someone to look at your check book, what would they find? What would be their conclusion about your life and what is first importance.

Proverbs 10:17-21 Whoever heeds instruction is on the path to life, but he who rejects reproof leads others astray. The one who conceals hatred has lying lips, and whoever utters slander is a fool. When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent. The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; the heart of the wicked is of little worth. The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of sense.

God has mentioned His path before and He desires for us to be on it. We need to follow His instructions and obey. What does that look like? It looks like loving, kindness. It looks like showing mercy and grace to others. It is saying no to sin. It is being pure in thoughts and motives. It is being honest and truthful. It is a life of integrity. The list could be long but you get the idea. Draw and line down the sheet of paper. On one side write down what God would have us do and on the other what disobedience would look like. Add a verse to them both. It could be very helpful when times of sin and challenges come and when you are in the battle. Having a plan is so important. The enemy can use our lack of being prepared. If we are intentional and have the armor on and ready we have a much better chance of saying no when we need to. Did you catch the blessing a righteous word can be? How that is needed. I know there is far too much beating down vs. lifting up. Be intentional today and lift someone up in your words.

Proverbs 10:23 Doing wrong is like a joke to a fool, but wisdom is pleasure to a man of understanding.

Have you seen the person that just thinks it is funny when harming themselves or others? They laugh it off like it is not big deal.

Have a great day racin’ in the SONshine. I look forward to seeing you soon at a local race track.

Todd