Category Archives: Surprise

We need to realize we are at an intersection point. We need to turn back to God humbly and pray.


You wake up at your normal time and when you login you see the computer’s clock shows 3 hours earlier. How will you adjust? How will you respond? Are you ready for a new day with an early start? Are you ready for a new adventure? What if you found a surprise last night? What if you gave it up to God rather than worrying in order to get some sleep? How will God take care of it? How will God provide this time? Let’s get ready to go and see what all He will do with today!

Day 10: 2020 Hindsight
— The 49-Week Challenge – Day 10 —

Hindsight is 2020

Want to join me in the challenge? Click Day 10 link above or want to join link here to join me and sign up.

Let’s share our takeaways from today’s reading! Did you catch and promises to trust? Did you catch any commands to obey? Did you catch any truths to embrace? Did you catch any warnings to heed? Did you catch any encouragement to rest in? What did you learn about God? What did you learn about yourself? What did you learn about the world? What verse stood out most to you today?

If you are interested in getting together or sharing the information together, please let me know through the comment section below, through email, or even through text messages.


Today’s reading from God’s Word – the Bible comes to us from: (I have chosen to use NIV translation, but feel free to choose whichever version you feel more comfortable with)


My Notes:

  • Do you realize that sometime to get you where you need to be requires that you are inconvenienced? Similar to how it took the census of Caesar Augustus to get get Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem in time for the birth of Jesus.
  • Do you realize that sometimes God uses the selfishness or plans of man to accomplish His will? Similar to how Caesar Augustus’s desire to be able to tax, control, manipulate, enlist caused him to take a census of the entire Roman world.
  • Do you realize that even when others have plans for evil, God can turn them around and use them for good? Similar to how Joseph’s brothers sold him as a slave but how it positioned Joseph to save not only Egypt but also his entire family.
  • Do you realize that God’s plan is for everyone? Similar to how in the midst of the birth of Jesus, He sent out angels to the shepherds so they too can know of the birth of the savior.
  • Do you realize that God can bring encouragement in the midst of your life by sending others to speak God’s truth to you? Similar to how the shepherds went to see Jesus and how it spoke truth and life to Mary and Joseph. Similar to how Simeon spoke praising God as he was to live until he got to see the salvation for both Israel and the gentiles. Similar to how Anna, the daughter of Penuel got to speak about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem.
  • Do you realize the importance of giving your children to God and having them dedicated to Him? Similar to what they did both for Jesus and in the Old Testament.
  • Do you realize there are reasons and purposes for resisting things and even celebrating things? Like what was being done because the Lord brought the people of Israel out of Egypt with His mighty hand, out the land of slavery.
  • Do you realize no matter the situation or the circumstances, God will lead you and guide if you are willing to listen and follow after Him. Like how He provided fire by night and cloud by day.
  • Do you realize there is a way and time for everything? God reveals these things in His Word like purification, like Solomon spoke.
  • Let’s celebrate all the good God has done for us so that others may see it and also glorify our Heavenly Father in heaven.
  • Do you realize that God will forgive our sins and heal our land? Like He promised in today’s reading when he said:
    • ‘“When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. ‘ — 2 Chronicles 7:13-14
  • Do you realize God is revealed through everything in life?

As day 10 of 2020 begins, I would hate to miss giving the opportunity to anyone who hasn’t received Jesus into their lives as their Lord and Savior an opportunity to make the decision this early into 2020 and the blessing to get to live out the rest of 2020 in that power and that truth and that hope.

If you would like to receive Jesus as your Lord and Savior, why not join me in this prayer?

Did you pray with me? Would you be willing to leave me a comment so that I can pray with and for you about such an incredible decision? Or if you don’t feel comfortable leaving a comment on my blog, why not email or text me instead?


Today’s devotional comes from Life.Church. For more information, please visit www.life.church — Thank you Life.Church for sharing this reading plan through Bible.com

How will you respond to call God has put on your life?


What if there was an unplanned and divine appointment where someone tells you? What if there was a reading that you read? What if there was a message that you heard driving your car? What if there was an encounter while you were walking down the street? If the call is from God, will you answer it? If the call is from God, will you trust it? Do you remember the promises? Do you remember the plan? Do you remember the purpose?

Will you be humble? Will you be surprised? Will you be obedient? Will you question it? Will you doubt it? Will you reject it? Will you resist it?

What will it take to get your attention and to answer the call from God? Will you heard the Word of God and do it? Will you allow God’s light fill you to overflowing so that there will be no dark corners and so that you will overflow with light?


Today’s reading from God’s Word gets kicked off with the story of Saul meeting Samuel in 1 Samuel 9…

‘There was a wealthy, influential man named Kish from the tribe of Benjamin. He was the son of Abiel, son of Zeror, son of Becorath, son of Aphiah, of the tribe of Benjamin. His son Saul was the most handsome man in Israel—head and shoulders taller than anyone else in the land. One day Kish’s donkeys strayed away, and he told Saul, “Take a servant with you, and go look for the donkeys.” So Saul took one of the servants and traveled through the hill country of Ephraim, the land of Shalishah, the Shaalim area, and the entire land of Benjamin, but they couldn’t find the donkeys anywhere. Finally, they entered the region of Zuph, and Saul said to his servant, “Let’s go home. By now my father will be more worried about us than about the donkeys!” But the servant said, “I’ve just thought of something! There is a man of God who lives here in this town. He is held in high honor by all the people because everything he says comes true. Let’s go find him. Perhaps he can tell us which way to go.” “But we don’t have anything to offer him,” Saul replied. “Even our food is gone, and we don’t have a thing to give him.” “Well,” the servant said, “I have one small silver piece. We can at least offer it to the man of God and see what happens!” (In those days if people wanted a message from God, they would say, “Let’s go and ask the seer,” for prophets used to be called seers.) “All right,” Saul agreed, “let’s try it!” So they started into the town where the man of God lived. As they were climbing the hill to the town, they met some young women coming out to draw water. So Saul and his servant asked, “Is the seer here today?” “Yes,” they replied. “Stay right on this road. He is at the town gates. He has just arrived to take part in a public sacrifice up at the place of worship. Hurry and catch him before he goes up there to eat. The guests won’t begin eating until he arrives to bless the food.” So they entered the town, and as they passed through the gates, Samuel was coming out toward them to go up to the place of worship. Now the Lord had told Samuel the previous day, “About this time tomorrow I will send you a man from the land of Benjamin. Anoint him to be the leader of my people, Israel. He will rescue them from the Philistines, for I have looked down on my people in mercy and have heard their cry.” When Samuel saw Saul, the Lord said, “That’s the man I told you about! He will rule my people.” Just then Saul approached Samuel at the gateway and asked, “Can you please tell me where the seer’s house is?” “I am the seer!” Samuel replied. “Go up to the place of worship ahead of me. We will eat there together, and in the morning I’ll tell you what you want to know and send you on your way. And don’t worry about those donkeys that were lost three days ago, for they have been found. And I am here to tell you that you and your family are the focus of all Israel’s hopes.” Saul replied, “But I’m only from the tribe of Benjamin, the smallest tribe in Israel, and my family is the least important of all the families of that tribe! Why are you talking like this to me?” Then Samuel brought Saul and his servant into the hall and placed them at the head of the table, honoring them above the thirty special guests. Samuel then instructed the cook to bring Saul the finest cut of meat, the piece that had been set aside for the guest of honor. So the cook brought in the meat and placed it before Saul. “Go ahead and eat it,” Samuel said. “I was saving it for you even before I invited these others!” So Saul ate with Samuel that day. When they came down from the place of worship and returned to town, Samuel took Saul up to the roof of the house and prepared a bed for him there. At daybreak the next morning, Samuel called to Saul, “Get up! It’s time you were on your way.” So Saul got ready, and he and Samuel left the house together. When they reached the edge of town, Samuel told Saul to send his servant on ahead. After the servant was gone, Samuel said, “Stay here, for I have received a special message for you from God.”’

–1 Samuel 9

‘Lord , you always give me justice when I bring a case before you. So let me bring you this complaint: Why are the wicked so prosperous? Why are evil people so happy? You have planted them, and they have taken root and prospered. Your name is on their lips, but you are far from their hearts. But as for me, Lord , you know my heart. You see me and test my thoughts. Drag these people away like sheep to be butchered! Set them aside to be slaughtered! How long must this land mourn? Even the grass in the fields has withered. The wild animals and birds have disappeared because of the evil in the land. For the people have said, “The Lord doesn’t see what’s ahead for us!” “If racing against mere men makes you tired, how will you race against horses? If you stumble and fall on open ground, what will you do in the thickets near the Jordan? Even your brothers, members of your own family, have turned against you. They plot and raise complaints against you. Do not trust them, no matter how pleasantly they speak. “I have abandoned my people, my special possession. I have surrendered my dearest ones to their enemies. My chosen people have roared at me like a lion of the forest, so I have treated them with contempt. My chosen people act like speckled vultures, but they themselves are surrounded by vultures. Bring on the wild animals to pick their corpses clean! “Many rulers have ravaged my vineyard, trampling down the vines and turning all its beauty into a barren wilderness. They have made it an empty wasteland; I hear its mournful cry. The whole land is desolate, and no one even cares. On all the bare hilltops, destroying armies can be seen. The sword of the Lord devours people from one end of the nation to the other. No one will escape! My people have planted wheat but are harvesting thorns. They have worn themselves out, but it has done them no good. They will harvest a crop of shame because of the fierce anger of the Lord .” Now this is what the Lord says: “I will uproot from their land all the evil nations reaching out for the possession I gave my people Israel. And I will uproot Judah from among them. But afterward I will return and have compassion on all of them. I will bring them home to their own lands again, each nation to its own possession. And if these nations truly learn the ways of my people, and if they learn to swear by my name, saying, ‘As surely as the Lord lives’ (just as they taught my people to swear by the name of Baal), then they will be given a place among my people. But any nation who refuses to obey me will be uprooted and destroyed. I, the Lord , have spoken!”’

– Jeremiah 12

‘One day Jesus cast out a demon from a man who couldn’t speak, and when the demon was gone, the man began to speak. The crowds were amazed, but some of them said, “No wonder he can cast out demons. He gets his power from Satan, the prince of demons.” Others, trying to test Jesus, demanded that he show them a miraculous sign from heaven to prove his authority. He knew their thoughts, so he said, “Any kingdom divided by civil war is doomed. A family splintered by feuding will fall apart. You say I am empowered by Satan. But if Satan is divided and fighting against himself, how can his kingdom survive? And if I am empowered by Satan, what about your own exorcists? They cast out demons, too, so they will condemn you for what you have said. But if I am casting out demons by the power of God, then the Kingdom of God has arrived among you. For when a strong man is fully armed and guards his palace, his possessions are safe— until someone even stronger attacks and overpowers him, strips him of his weapons, and carries off his belongings. “Anyone who isn’t with me opposes me, and anyone who isn’t working with me is actually working against me. “When an evil spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, searching for rest. But when it finds none, it says, ‘I will return to the person I came from.’ So it returns and finds that its former home is all swept and in order. Then the spirit finds seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they all enter the person and live there. And so that person is worse off than before.” As he was speaking, a woman in the crowd called out, “God bless your mother—the womb from which you came, and the breasts that nursed you!” Jesus replied, “But even more blessed are all who hear the word of God and put it into practice.” As the crowd pressed in on Jesus, he said, “This evil generation keeps asking me to show them a miraculous sign. But the only sign I will give them is the sign of Jonah. What happened to him was a sign to the people of Nineveh that God had sent him. What happens to the Son of Man will be a sign to these people that he was sent by God. “The queen of Sheba will stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for she came from a distant land to hear the wisdom of Solomon. Now someone greater than Solomon is here—but you refuse to listen. The people of Nineveh will also stand up against this generation on judgment day and condemn it, for they repented of their sins at the preaching of Jonah. Now someone greater than Jonah is here—but you refuse to repent. “No one lights a lamp and then hides it or puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house. “Your eye is like a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is healthy, your whole body is filled with light. But when it is unhealthy, your body is filled with darkness. Make sure that the light you think you have is not actually darkness. If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant, as though a floodlight were filling you with light.”’

– Luke 11:14-36

‘And now, a word to you who are elders in the churches. I, too, am an elder and a witness to the sufferings of Christ. And I, too, will share in his glory when he is revealed to the whole world. As a fellow elder, I appeal to you: Care for the flock that God has entrusted to you. Watch over it willingly, not grudgingly—not for what you will get out of it, but because you are eager to serve God. Don’t lord it over the people assigned to your care, but lead them by your own good example. And when the Great Shepherd appears, you will receive a crown of never-ending glory and honor. In the same way, you who are younger must accept the authority of the elders. And all of you, dress yourselves in humility as you relate to one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are. In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation. All power to him forever! Amen. I have written and sent this short letter to you with the help of Silas, whom I commend to you as a faithful brother. My purpose in writing is to encourage you and assure you that what you are experiencing is truly part of God’s grace for you. Stand firm in this grace. Your sister church here in Babylon sends you greetings, and so does my son Mark. Greet each other with a kiss of love. Peace be with all of you who are in Christ.’

— 1 Peter 5

‘God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. Let the oceans roar and foam. Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge! Interlude A river brings joy to the city of our God, the sacred home of the Most High. God dwells in that city; it cannot be destroyed. From the very break of day, God will protect it. The nations are in chaos, and their kingdoms crumble! God’s voice thunders, and the earth melts! The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us; the God of Israel is our fortress. Interlude Come, see the glorious works of the Lord : See how he brings destruction upon the world. He causes wars to end throughout the earth. He breaks the bow and snaps the spear; he burns the shields with fire. “Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.” The Lord of Heaven’s Armies is here among us; the God of Israel is our fortress. Interlude’

— Psalms 46

Amazed - Surprised

Ever been amazed? Ever been surprised?


Ever come back from something and been surprised at what you found? Ever had a conversation and been amazed at what was said? Ever been amazed to find out you can be a part? Ever been surprised to find out you were part of the plan from the beginning? Did you know that the ball is in your hands? Did you know that you are on the offense? Did you realize that with the victory that Jesus provided we can be on offense? Did you realize that you don’t have to worry or be afraid because Jesus has already won the victory and so we just need to do our part? Let’s share His grace with those who have been placed into our lives! Let’s share His love with those who He has placed in our lives! Let’s make a difference without a critical heart so that in and through us the glory of God can be shown to others that God brings into our lives!

Let’s consider what God’s Word starts with today…

27At that moment Jesus’ disciples returned, and they were greatly surprised to find him talking with a woman. But none of them said to her, “What do you want?” or asked him, “Why are you talking with her?” 28Then the woman left her water jar, went back to the town, and said to the people there, 29“Come and see the man who told me everything I have ever done. Could he be the Messiah?” 30So they left the town and went to Jesus.

31In the meantime the disciples were begging Jesus, “Teacher, have something to eat!” 32But he answered, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.” 33So the disciples started asking among themselves, “Could somebody have brought him food?” 34“My food,” Jesus said to them, “is to obey the will of the one who sent me and to finish the work he gave me to do. 35You have a saying, ‘Four more months and then the harvest.’ But I tell you, take a good look at the fields; the crops are now ripe and ready to be harvested! 36The one who reaps the harvest is being paid and gathers the crops for eternal life; so the one who plants and the one who reaps will be glad together. 37For the saying is true, ‘Someone plants, someone else reaps.’ 38I have sent you to reap a harvest in a field where you did not work; others worked there, and you profit from their work.” 39Many of the Samaritans in that town believed in Jesus because the woman had said, “He told me everything I have ever done.”

40So when the Samaritans came to him, they begged him to stay with them, and Jesus stayed there two days. 41Many more believed because of his message, 42and they told the woman, “We believe now, not because of what you said, but because we ourselves have heard him, and we know that he really is the Savior of the world.”

–from John 4

Do you believe? What did it take for you to believe? What would it take for you to believe? Imagine the change, the transformation, the difference it would make in how you live and love and shine into this world you live in. We have been chosen according to God’s purpose! We have been set apart to be different by God’s Holy Spirit! So let’s live under the covering of the blood of Jesus in alignment and obedience to His plan and purpose for each of our lives! In this way we can be ambassadors of peace and grace to the world around us! Let’s shine for Him! Let’s make a difference for Him! Let’s allow our faith to be proven and shared so that others may be able to share in the promises of God!

1From Peter, apostle of Jesus Christ—To God’s chosen people who live as refugees scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia. 2You were chosen according to the purpose of God the Father and were made a holy people by his Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be purified by his blood. May grace and peace be yours in full measure.

A Living Hope

3Let us give thanks to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! Because of his great mercy he gave us new life by raising Jesus Christ from death. This fills us with a living hope, 4and so we look forward to possessing the rich blessings that God keeps for his people. He keeps them for you in heaven, where they cannot decay or spoil or fade away. 5They are for you, who through faith are kept safe by God’s power for the salvation which is ready to be revealed at the end of time. 6Be glad about this, even though it may now be necessary for you to be sad for a while because of the many kinds of trials you suffer. 7Their purpose is to prove that your faith is genuine. Even gold, which can be destroyed, is tested by fire; and so your faith, which is much more precious than gold, must also be tested, so that it may endure. Then you will receive praise and glory and honor on the Day when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8You love him, although you have not seen him, and you believe in him, although you do not now see him. So you rejoice with a great and glorious joy which words cannot express, 9because you are receiving the salvation of your souls, which is the purpose of your faith in him.

–from 1 Peter 1

Let’s be wise in what we do. Let’s not cause our words, our actions, or our attitude keep people from the reality of God! Let’s live a life that is consistent with the gospel of Jesus Christ! Life isn’t performance based, for we are saved by grace through faith so that nobody can boast! Life isn’t about what we can do, but about what Jesus has already done for us! It’s about a living relationship with Jesus! It’s about spending time with Jesus and allowing Him to speak the truth, the hope, the love, and the life He desires for us! It’s not Jesus+ it’s just Jesus. Consider what today’s reading from the old testament says…

1Dead flies can make a whole bottle of perfume stink, and a little stupidity can cancel out the greatest wisdom. 2It is natural for the wise to do the right thing and for fools to do the wrong thing. 3Their stupidity will be evident even to strangers they meet along the way; they let everyone know that they are fools. 4If your ruler becomes angry with you, do not hand in your resignation; serious wrongs may be pardoned if you keep calm. 5Here is an injustice I have seen in the world—an injustice caused by rulers. 6Stupid people are given positions of authority while the rich are ignored. 7I have seen slaves on horseback while noblemen go on foot like slaves. 8If you dig a pit, you fall in it; if you break through a wall, a snake bites you. 9If you work in a stone quarry, you get hurt by stones. If you split wood, you get hurt doing it. 10If your ax is dull and you don’t sharpen it, you have to work harder to use it. It is smarter to plan ahead. 11Knowing how to charm a snake is of no use if you let the snake bite first. 12What the wise say brings them honor, but fools are destroyed by their own words. 13They start out with silly talk and end up with pure madness. 14A fool talks on and on. No one knows what is going to happen next, and no one can tell us what will happen after we die. 15Only someone too stupid to find his way home would wear himself out with work. 16A country is in trouble when its king is a youth and its leaders feast all night long. 17But a country is fortunate to have a king who makes his own decisions and leaders who eat at the proper time, who control themselves and don’t get drunk. 18When you are too lazy to repair your roof, it will leak, and the house will fall in. 19Feasting makes you happy and wine cheers you up, but you can’t have either without money. 20Don’t criticize the king, even silently, and don’t criticize the rich, even in the privacy of your bedroom. A bird might carry the message and tell them what you said.

–from Ecclesiastes 10

God knows the beginning and the end! What you do won’t surprise him!


A few days I posted about how we can’t surprise God. In that post we saw how Jesus told Peter that he would deny Jesus. Today’s reading starts with showing how Jesus knew what He was talking about no matter how much Peter fought against it. Jesus knew the challenges, the pressure, and the situation that was being setup. Jesus knew how Peter would respond when put into that situation. The cool part is that it made Peter’s faith even stronger because after Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into Heaven, on the day of Pentecost, when Peter was filled with the Holy Spirit, he became that rock on which the church could be built that Jesus spoke of. Let’s take a look though at how Jesus’ prediction played out…

Peter Denies Jesus

(Matthew 26.57, 58, 69-75; Mark 14.53, 54, 66-72; John 18.12-18, 25-27)
54They arrested Jesus and took him away into the house of the High Priest; and Peter followed at a distance. 55A fire had been lit in the center of the courtyard, and Peter joined those who were sitting around it. 56When one of the servant women saw him sitting there at the fire, she looked straight at him and said, “This man too was with Jesus!” 57But Peter denied it, “Woman, I don’t even know him!” 58After a little while a man noticed Peter and said, “You are one of them, too!” But Peter answered, “Man, I am not!” 59And about an hour later another man insisted strongly, “There isn’t any doubt that this man was with Jesus, because he also is a Galilean!” 60But Peter answered, “Man, I don’t know what you are talking about!” At once, while he was still speaking, a rooster crowed. 61The Lord turned around and looked straight at Peter, and Peter remembered that the Lord had said to him, “Before the rooster crows tonight, you will say three times that you do not know me.” 62Peter went out and wept bitterly.

–from Luke 22

When Peter realized what played out it hit him hard. He realized that he wasn’t as strong as he thought he was on his own. Without God’s power we are weak. When we ask Jesus into our hearts and allow the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us we are transformed. And we see this take place in Peter and the other disciples. We even see this when Paul has his initial encounter with Jesus and how it turned the world on its head.

Jesus has stepped in as the perfect intercessor for us. He is our perfect priest allowing us to go to the thrown room of God and seek wisdom and discernment and forgiveness. Jesus was the one sacrifice that was good enough forever.

Another Priest, like Melchizedek

15The matter becomes even plainer; a different priest has appeared, who is like Melchizedek. 16He was made a priest, not by human rules and regulations, but through the power of a life which has no end. 17 For the scripture says, “You will be a priest forever, in the priestly order of Melchizedek.” 18The old rule, then, is set aside, because it was weak and useless. 19For the Law of Moses could not make anything perfect. And now a better hope has been provided through which we come near to God. 20In addition, there is also God’s vow. There was no such vow when the others were made priests. 21 But Jesus became a priest by means of a vow when God said to him, “The Lord has made a solemn promise and will not take it back: ‘You will be a priest forever.’” 22This difference, then, also makes Jesus the guarantee of a better covenant. 23There is another difference: there were many of those other priests, because they died and could not continue their work. 24But Jesus lives on forever, and his work as priest does not pass on to someone else. 25And so he is able, now and always, to save those who come to God through him, because he lives forever to plead with God for them. 26Jesus, then, is the High Priest that meets our needs. He is holy; he has no fault or sin in him; he has been set apart from sinners and raised above the heavens. 27 He is not like other high priests; he does not need to offer sacrifices every day for his own sins first and then for the sins of the people. He offered one sacrifice, once and for all, when he offered himself. 28The Law of Moses appoints men who are imperfect to be high priests; but God’s promise made with the vow, which came later than the Law, appoints the Son, who has been made perfect forever. –from Hebrews 7

God is good to His Word! He keeps His promises! We can take Him at His Word and trust that He will do what He promises!

We can always turn to God’s Word for wisdom. Today Proverbs provides us the completion of the list of 30 wise sayings…

-19-
1Don’t be envious of evil people, and don’t try to make friends with them. 2Causing trouble is all they ever think about; every time they open their mouth someone is going to be hurt.
-20-
3Homes are built on the foundation of wisdom and understanding. 4Where there is knowledge, the rooms are furnished with valuable, beautiful things.
-21-
5Being wise is better than being strong; yes, knowledge is more important than strength. 6After all, you must make careful plans before you fight a battle, and the more good advice you get, the more likely you are to win.
-22-
7Wise sayings are too deep for stupid people to understand. They have nothing to say when important matters are being discussed.
-23-
8If you are always planning evil, you will earn a reputation as a troublemaker. 9Any scheme a fool thinks up is sinful. People hate a person who has nothing but scorn for others.
-24-
10If you are weak in a crisis, you are weak indeed.
-25-
11Don’t hesitate to rescue someone who is about to be executed unjustly. 12You may say that it is none of your business, but God knows and judges your motives. He keeps watch on you; he knows. And he will reward you according to what you do.
-26-
13My child, eat honey; it is good. And just as honey from the comb is sweet on your tongue, 14you may be sure that wisdom is good for the soul. Get wisdom and you have a bright future.
-27-
15Don’t be like the wicked who scheme to rob honest people or to take away their homes. 16No matter how often honest people fall, they always get up again; but disaster destroys the wicked.
-28-
17Don’t be glad when your enemies meet disaster, and don’t rejoice when they stumble. 18The Lord will know if you are gloating, and he will not like it; and then maybe he won’t punish them.
-29-
19Don’t let evil people worry you; don’t be envious of them. 20A wicked person has no future—nothing to look forward to.
-30-
21Have reverence for the Lord, my child, and honor the king. Have nothing to do with people who rebel against them; 22such people could be ruined in a moment. Do you realize the disaster that God or the king can cause?

–from Proverbs 24