Christmas and the End of the Year

This time of the year is filled with celebration. We roll right from Thanksgiving into Christmas and Christmas to the end of the year and then immediately follow that with the New Year. We can be caught up in the celebration and miss the One that should be our focus. Jesus is the one we are to give thanks to. Jesus is the focus of Christmas and at the end of the year we should think about all God has blessed us with and carried us through and then the New Year we should look to God and His direction for the year to come. I hope you do not just pass through the holiday’s and ignore the LORD. May He be the focus point.

Proverbs 28:21 To show partiality is not good, but for a piece of bread a man will do wrong.
I read the back half of this verse and think, “It does not take much for me to sin.” What a sad statement yet I fear it is true too often. Dear LORD help me to grasp on to You and hold tight and not give ground to sin.

Proverbs 28:22 A stingy man hastens after wealth and does not know that poverty will come upon him.
Think of reading through Proverbs and not getting this. Ouch. We are so wealthy here in America and we have so much more than just shelter; clothing and food. We live in large spaces. We have closets and drawers full of clothing. We have shelves, and freezers and refrigerators full of food with many times eating out and huge stores full of food around the corner.

Proverbs 28:23 Whoever rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with his tongue.
Echo! We have seen it often before in Proverbs but are reminded again, who receives our praise? Is it man or God? Is it the worldly person or your pastor? What words come off your tongue most often, those that push down or those that lift up?

Proverbs 28:24 Whoever robs his father or his mother and says, “That is no transgression,” is a companion to a man who destroys.
Tough verse as I see it. There are many ways to “rob” parents and I see it now how easy it can and did happen. LORD I need your forgiveness.

Proverbs 28:25-6 A greedy man stirs up strife, but the one who trusts in the Lord will be enriched. Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool, but he who walks in wisdom will be delivered.
What way do you trust in the LORD? In what areas of your life do you trust in self? In this chapter we find we are delivered by walking in integrity and wisdom. If we examine my life or your life what will we find us walking in?

Proverbs 28:27 Whoever gives to the poor will not want, but he who hides his eyes will get many a curse.
God is still not done with reminding us to give to the poor, the needy. Here is a note for this chapter that is interesting. In 19 of the 28 verses there is a “but”. There is a clear contrast between right and wrong, God’s way and against God. Are you willing to obey God and the things in Proverbs or are you ok with the consequences? Let me tell you, it is not worth feeding the flesh. It is worth following the LORD and obeying Him.

Proverbs 28:28 When the wicked rise, people hide themselves, but when they perish, the righteous increase.
The continuous echo in Proverbs is that there is nothing for the wicked but for the righteous there are great things to look forward to. God does not change positions on this. We see here again that the wicked often try to hide but sin cannot be hidden from God. He sees all and knows all.

Have a great day racin’ in the SONshine,
Todd

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