Monday, September 12 – “The wise inherit honor, but fools get only shame.” (Proverbs 3:35) Wisdom and foolishness have nothing to do with your level of intelligence. They both have to do with how well you are able to use your level of intelligence. Many people with a high IQ play the fool. For they don’t use their intelligence in their daily life. Likewise, many people with a lower IQ are very wise. For they use all of their intelligence, in their daily life. What about you? Are you wise or are you a fool?
Tuesday, September 13 – “A quick-tempered person does foolish things, and the one who devises evil schemes is hated.” (Proverbs 14:17) “Quick-tempered” is the key. Wisdom requires not only intelligence, it also requires patience. None of us are very good at making the right decisions, in the heat of the moment. It might be true that your first reaction is the right reaction. Yet it just might also be true that your first reaction isn’t the best reaction, in that very moment. There is a difference between being right and being wise. If you don’t know the difference then you have your assignment for today.
Wednesday, September 14 – “A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.” (Proverbs 15:18) God is calling you to be a peace-maker, not a quarrel starter. More conflicts have been resolved through peace-making than all the wars combined. You just don’t know about them, because they didn’t make it into any history books. It’s the friend who lends a listening ear. It’s the business associate who offers a solution. It’s the teacher who patiently works with a distracted student. It’s the parent who remembers the rebellious nature of their children. Patience always calms any quarrel, anywhere and anytime.
Thursday, September 15 – “The prudent keep their knowledge to themselves, but a fool’s heart blurts out folly.” (Proverbs 12:23) Have you ever given out any advice, direction or discipline; and later found out that it wasn’t right? Upon reflection you realized that if you would have just listened for a little while longer or just asked a few different questions, you would have been in a much better position to share the right advice, direction or discipline. That’s patience. Or as our verse puts it for today, keeping your knowledge to yourself. Being patient is knowing when to speak, a little bit less, and when to listen, a little bit more.
Friday, September 16 – “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” (Ephesians 4:2) I know you might find this hard to believe, but people have to bear you in love. It’s hard to admit that you aren’t perfect. But, you aren’t perfect. Just as you must bear with other imperfect people, in your life; there are others out there who are bearing with you. Why else do you think Paul had to write these words 1,960 years ago? It’s always been this way and it will always be this way, on this side of eternity. So, stop beating yourself up and get out there and be humble, be gentle and be patient with others.
Saturday, September 17 – “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” (James 1:19) Does this verse describe you? In the complexity of life do you find yourself, more often than not, quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry? If yes, make sure you are teaching these things to everyone you meet. If not, what can you do this weekend to get better at all three?