I have recently been reading through the book of Proverbs. I realised how, over the years, I have taken many of the proverbs as promises. However, the proverbs are not promises. They are words of wisdom. Many of them are truths about human behaviour and clearly show the principle of sowing and reaping. In essence the proverbs are instructions as to how we should live, given in the form of commands.
Many of the proverbs speak of the importance of character that is esteemed far above reputation. On our daily news we hear of prominent people who, through corrupt behaviour or slanderous statements about them, have lost their reputation. In the eyes of others they have fallen from grace and not lived up to their reputation.
We all have a reputation – it’s what other people think of us – what we appear to be to them. Some people work hard to defend their reputation and often create a false image of what they really are.
God’s not concerned with our reputation. He’s deeply concerned about our character. Character is what God knows us to be. Character doesn’t just happen. It develops out of daily choices as to how we live our lives - godly choices, that become a way of life, whether good or bad.
God sometimes chooses suffering to develop our character. The hard times prove what we really are on the inside. They develop perseverance as our eyes are on Jesus and not the circumstances engulfing us. Character can’t be divorced from endurance. It grows from a daily walk with God.
When we recognise that we’re accountable to God it shapes the decisions we make – character- forming decisions, relying on His faithfulness and the conscious daily knowledge that He’s always with us. Whether we feel it or we don’t feel it, His presence never leaves us.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, please help me to trust You today and every day. Whatever others may think of me, You know me as I am. Help me to make daily choices that honour You so that pleasing and honouring You becomes my way of life. Thank You for Your promise that You will never leave me nor forsake me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
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