Read Proverbs 1
I love watching movies and getting wrapped up in their stories. I especially love action movies; whether it’s Jason Bourne trying to figure out who he is or the Transporter trying to deliver the “package” or Barney Ross and his ragtag group trying to save a country, I love action. The explosions, the fight-scenes, and car chases keep me on the edge of my seat! In these movies, these men are the heroes that we root for, sure that they will be able to save the day.
But the verses in today’s Proverb talk about characters who we would classify as the “bad guys”. This Proverb talks about the worst part of humanity that is broken and hurting and wants to only take from others. In this chapter, Solomon warns us about hanging out with these people. If we’re honest, it’s fairly easy for us to avoid people who want to beat up the elderly or rob a bank. For many of us, we’re in relationship with few people who fall into that category. But I’d like to posit that Solomon was referring to more than just the external behavior, he was concerned about the underly emotions that fuel actions.
Greed is a root that needs to be removed.
When you grab all you can get, that’s what happens:
the more you get, the less you are.
This verse stood out to me when I read through this Proverb. While we might not be robbing banks in our spare time, there are likely areas in which we are greedy. I know that I am. I tend to be less stingy with money, but greedy with relationships or time. I can be stingy with giving my time to people because I know it’s valuable. So, if I take time to have lunch with you for a few hours, I will have weighed that against how many words I could’ve written in that time. I’m also slow to let people know who I am, taking all I can from them without giving much back in the beginning. There are times when I’ll just consume and consume without sharing any of what I’ve received with others, whether it’s truth or skills or compassion or love.
It’s so very interesting how true that verse is. The more that I consume and retreat into my greedy, insulated shell and isolate myself from my community and those who love me, the more I become less of who I truly am. When I’m fueled by greed I’m not free to be who God created me to be.
Are there any areas of your life you’ve allowed greed to control? Are you being stingy with any of the gifts God’s given you? What would it look like for you to shake that off and embrace who you truly are? Let’s drop the greedy facade and embrace who God has made and called us to be!
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