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Watch our for extremes
The purpose of the entire thirty-one chapters of Proverbs is to give instruction for wise and godly living and although I have no intention of addressing most of the topics, this week I'll look briefly at the matter of self-control and avoiding extremes. They're also some of the bad habits I've had to work hard at mastering – just so you don't think I'm pointing fingers!
In chapter 23, Solomon points out a number of necessary things that we humans often take to extremes, namely food, work and budgeting. As necessary as they are, it's when they get out of control that they cause problems. All three, self-indulgence, over working for wrong purposes and the matter of how we spend money, are essential and a blessing when kept in right order.
Regarding self indulgence, in the first verse of this chapter Solomon speaks about the dangers of over eating. "While dining with a ruler, pay attention to what is put before you; if you are a big eater, put a knife to your throat." In this case l am not commenting on the warning given regarding our dinner companions (that's another subject) but rather on our appetite. I know from personal experience that great harm can result from gluttony and thankfully, as a testimony to God's help, I've been learning that lesson and have shed the excess weight I carried for so long.
Over-working simply for the purpose of amassing wealth often takes its toll on health, family and other relationships while diverting attention from the really important things of life. "Riches certainly make themselves wings," Solomon noted, then added, on the other hand "drowsiness will clothe a man with rags". Wise handling of finances with the goal of pleasing God is essential in these days of easy credit.
Thanks, Solomon, for great Biblical, practical advice!
March 5, 2018