For those who do not know Solomon, he was a man uniquely gifted with wisdom by God. He wrote proverbs a few thousand years ago now and his observations and counsel are as valid today as they were then.
We should be very cautious when we pledge, with our money or resources to back it up, on behalf of someone else who is struggling to manage their money. (If they were not struggling, they would not need our help.) Do not risk in this way anything you are not willing to lose if circumstances do not work out.
1My son, if you have become surety for your neighbor,
Have given a pledge for a stranger,
2If you have been snared with the words of your mouth,
Have been caught with the words of your mouth,
3Do this then, my son, and deliver yourself;
Since you have come into the hand of your neighbor,
Go, humble yourself, and importune your neighbor.
4Give no sleep to your eyes,
Nor slumber to your eyelids;
5Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hunter’s hand
And like a bird from the hand of the fowler.
We must be diligent and take personal responsibility for our future needs. Do not rely on someone else or make excuses to put off getting started. The most important aspect of completing a journey is beginning it properly and at the right time. In this way we prepare wisely for our future and will also be better prepared to help others along the way.
6Go to the ant, O sluggard,
Observe her ways and be wise,
7Which, having no chief,
Officer or ruler,
8Prepares her food in the summer
And gathers her provision in the harvest.
Sloth, or laziness, is a sure way to end in poverty and need. There are other ways to find poverty, but sloth is one that almost assures it.
9How long will you lie down, O sluggard?
When will you arise from your sleep?
10“A little sleep, a little slumber,
A little folding of the hands to rest”—
11Your poverty will come in like a vagabond
And your need like an armed man.
God considers those who are wicked and perverse to be worthless. They may feel like they are “winning” and “being successful” at their wicked endeavors, but in the end they will face God’s judgment. Often there deceitful ways catch up with them in this life as well, bringing calamity without healing.
12A worthless person, a wicked man,
Is the one who walks with a perverse mouth,
13Who winks with his eyes, who signals with his feet,
Who points with his fingers;
14Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
Who spreads strife.
15Therefore his calamity will come suddenly;
Instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing.
Be wise in the ways of God rather than man. Seek to reflect on this wisdom from Solomon and apply it in your life. Do not just read it and say… “that is true, someone needs to hear that”. Instead, prayerfully ask God to help reveal to you any areas that you need to address personally in your life… and go start to fix them. Then consider if there are others you know that need help in this area. They will learn more from your example than from your words.
Remember that all you have belongs to God. Manage your money God’s way. Visit GrowGodsMoney.org .