Peanut Gallery: During the month of June we are reading through the Book of Proverbs, one chapter per day. “Growing in Character” is the theme; each day we will look for practical advice on living a wise and godly life in this present age.
I recommend that you begin by reading through the entire chapter for the day yourself (a link will be included, see below.) There is something for everyone in the Book of Proverbs. I will focus on what speaks to me in the chapter and follow that theme for the day. But the verse that speaks to me, on any particular day, may be different from the wisdom God has for you… and you don’t want to miss out.
Growing in Character: Proverbs 7
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
Opening sentence and prayer
One thing I have asked of the Lord, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life; to behold the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple.
Open my eyes, Lord, to see the wonderful truths in your instructions. Psalm 119:18 (NLT)
A reading from Proverbs: Proverbs 7:4-5, 24-27 (NLT)
Love wisdom like a sister; make insight a beloved member of your family. Let them protect you from an affair with an immoral woman, from listening to the flattery of a promiscuous woman.
So listen to me, my sons, and pay attention to my words. Don’t let your hearts stray away toward her. Don’t wander down her wayward path. For she has been the ruin of many; many men have been her victims. Her house is the road to the grave. Her bedroom is the den of death.
A reading from the Gospels: Matthew 5:27-28 (NLT)
“You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
Excerpted from “Flames of Desire” by Chip Bell (see full message here)
It is not amazing that men and women get involved in sexual sin. What is amazing is how much they are willing to pay for it….
What would make someone do that—risk so much to gain so little? Three things.
First, you usually don’t realize how much sexual sin is going to cost. It rarely comes with a visible price tag attached. The cost is hidden, and besides that, it’s pleasure purchased on credit, with unmentioned payments due for the rest of your life.
Second, sex is a powerful force. It compels people to voluntarily do things that they would never think themselves capable of doing under normal circumstances. The combination of sexual and emotional attraction is an undertow that captures people who are merely wading by the beach, sweeps them out to sea and does everything possible to drown them. Sex is powerful, but also deceptive, because those who are being swept out to sea are willing and excited about going on this adventure into deep water.
Third, sexual sin doesn’t begin with glaring and blatant transgressions. It starts with something very small and innocent—something that looks so harmless, it’s easy to allow. It starts with a desire.
Almighty God, who alone gave us the breath of life, and alone can keep our hearts filled with Your holy desires: I ask You, trusting in Your infinite compassion, to sanctify my thoughts and endeavors; that I may neither begin an action without a pure intention nor continue it without Your blessing. And grant that, having the eyes of my mind opened to behold things invisible and unseen, my heart may be inspired by Your wisdom, and my work upheld by Your strength, and in the end, that I may be accepted by You as Your faithful servant; through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
Christ, as a light illumine and guide me. Christ, as a shield overshadow me. Christ under me; Christ over me; Christ beside me on my left and my right.
This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful. Be in the heart of each to whom I speak; in the mouth of each who speaks unto me. This day be within and without me, lowly and meek, yet all-powerful.
Christ as a light; Christ as a shield; Christ beside me on my left and my right.
May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you, wherever He may send you. May He guide you through the wilderness, protect you through the storm. May He bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you. May He bring you home rejoicing once again into our doors.
+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Categories: Life in Christ