Living with a sense of immediacy can be both good and bad. When we're able to enjoy the present moment and engage with people in real-life time, it's good. When our life is focused on moment by moment experiences, we will never find contentment or fulfillment.
A life of faith is a life of trust. It's an investment that has a sure return, though it may appear risky or even short-sighted to others.
Being kind to the poor is like lending to the Lord; he will reward you for what you have done. Correct your children while there is still hope; do not let them destroy themselves. People with quick tempers will have to pay for it. If you help them out once, you will have to do it again [vss 17-19]
Listen to advice and accept correction, and in the end you will be wise. People can make all kinds of plans, but only the Lord’s plan will happen. People want others to be loyal, so it is better to be poor than to be a liar. Those who respect the Lord will live and be satisfied, unbothered by trouble. [vss 20-23]
Though the lazy person puts his hand in the dish, he won’t lift the food to his mouth. Whip those who make fun of wisdom, and perhaps foolish people will gain some wisdom. Correct those with understanding, and they will gain knowledge. A child who robs his father and sends away his mother brings shame and disgrace on himself. Don’t stop listening to correction, my child, or you will forget what you have already learned. [vss 24-27]
(Proverbs 19:17-27 GW) [Context– Proverbs 19]
Key phrase— Being kind to the poor is like lending to the Lord
[bctt tweet="Being kind to the poor is like lending to the Lord"]
What statements do you see are like investments with rewards or returns to come later?
Where do you see admonitions that express caution or warn of long-term consequences?
Which verses express thoughts in vivid picture language?
Of all the counsel in these verses, what surprises or even puzzles you?
A life of faith, guided by godly wisdom, provides a different perspective on life. The view of faith sees beyond the immediate.
It sees kindness towards the poor isn't just about giving them money. Faith sees the benefits of discipline and wisdom at work in relationships at home, work, and everyday life.
Faith also sees past the folly of lazy and ill-tempered people. It produces and leads to faithfulness in all aspects of life.
Make it personal...
Read through the Scripture text again to consider and answer the following questions
What ways can you think of to be kind toward the poor that go beyond giving money?
Do you struggle with laziness or lack of motivation, or have problems with your temper?
Who in your life do you trust to receive counsel from and who will honest with you?
Are you willing to pursue godly wisdom and discipline, and seek out others who have these qualities of character?