Lady Wisdom Vs. Madame Whore (Prov. 9)

Lady Wisdom has built and furnished her home; it’s supported by seven hewn timbers.

The banquet meal is ready to be served: lamb roasted, wine poured out, table set with silver and flowers.

Having dismissed her serving maids, Lady Wisdom goes to town, stands in a prominent place, and invites everyone within sound of her voice:

“Are you confused about life, don’t know what’s going on? Come with me, oh come, have dinner with me! I’ve prepared a wonderful spread—fresh-baked bread, roast lamb, carefully selected wines. Leave your impoverished confusion and live ! Walk up the street to a life with meaning.”

If you reason with an arrogant cynic, you’ll get slapped in the face; confront bad behavior and get a kick in the shins.

So don’t waste your time on a scoffer; all you’ll get for your pains is abuse.

But if you correct those who care about life, that’s different—they’ll love you for it!

Save your breath for the wise

—they’ll be wiser for it; tell good people what you know—they’ll profit from it.

Skilled living gets its start in the Fear-of- God , insight into life from knowing a Holy God.

It’s through me, Lady Wisdom, that your life deepens, and the years of your life ripen.

Live wisely and wisdom will permeate your life; mock life and life will mock you.

Then there’s this other woman, Madame Whore— brazen, empty-headed, frivolous. She sits on the front porch of her house on Main Street, And as people walk by minding their own business, calls out,

“Are you confused about life, don’t know what’s going on? Steal off with me, I’ll show you a good time! No one will ever know—I’ll give you the time of your life.”

But they don’t know about all the skeletons in her closet, that all her guests end up in hell.
Proverbs 9:1‭-‬18 MSG

Perhaps you’ve heard of Hotel California. You’ve heard it said & sung, “You can check out anytime you like but you can never leave.” Don’t you believe it. Christ paid the price to free us. Perhaps you’ve check out of life & living how Christ desires (with Joy & Abundantly); but He stands with open arms waiting for you to come back home to Him.

In Him, beetle

The Walk of Pain

That’s exactly what Jesus did. He didn’t make it easy for himself by avoiding people’s troubles, but waded right in and helped out.

“I took on the troubles of the troubled,” is the way Scripture puts it.

Even if it was written in Scripture long ago, you can be sure it’s written for us.

God wants the combination of his steady, constant calling and warm, personal counsel in Scripture to come to characterize us , keeping us alert for whatever He will do next.

May our dependably steady and warmly personal God develop maturity in you so that you get along with each other as well as Jesus gets along with us all.

Then we’ll be a choir—not our voices only, but our very lives singing in harmony in a stunning anthem to the God and Father of our Master Jesus!
Romans 15:3‭-‬6 MSG

Finding Your Footing

Jesus said, “My peace I give to you; not as the world gives …” (John 14:27).

Music, “Rocky Road” by Newworldson:

Living in society, today’s culture, weighing in on social status and shifting through different philosophical stuff can make our journey through life feel like we are traveling through air pockets in the sky, hiking the side of the rocky mountains, or sailing on a sea in great turmoil.

Consider this for a moment, you’re high above the earth in an airplane and experience turbulence. You feel the plane drop. Within those few seconds your mind races, wondering when, or even if, it will catch the air again.

Finally you feel it being supported once again by the air & winds you can not see. You sure can feel when it is there or not there but you look out your tiny window and you see nothing but clouds racing by. The aircraft plummets again and this time you hear someone cry out in panic,

“Put me back on the ground!”

You feel the urge to shout the same thing but can’t find the ability to speak.

You all know that those down there have a solid foundation on which to stand and you just wish it were possible to be back down there right now.

Although things are rough at this altitude, down below the storm is not as hard to tolerate. Sure, there may be wind & rain fall but you try to put your mind in a better place. You try to force your mind to what it would be like inside your home, it is almost perfectly quiet there. No sound but thunder, wind hitting the windows or rain coming down on the roof. No tumult. Not even a drop of turmoil.

Now, you’re back on the ground and hiking up a mountain. You’ve got all the right tools, special shoes, rope, & other safety equipment. You’re slowly reaching the elevation you’re striving for, but even on the most level surfaces the path has holes and stones just big enough to get under your feet & attempt to twist your feeble ankles.

No doubt, in those situations we will find it hard to find & keep our footing.

Then, it begins to rain and the wind picks up. All of a sudden the conditions become even more difficult. You started this adventure for fun but now circumstances are making it miserable.

You’re trying to keep standing but the ground under you is now wet & increasingly slippery. A gust of wind knocks you off your feet. You lay face down on the dirt and hold on, wondering how long this will continue, how far you’ve come, and how far you still have to go.

You recall how calm things were, down below this path. You miss sitting in your back yard, walking down a paved sidewalk or being under the shelter of your own home.

Although things are rough on this rock, dirt & current terrain you cling to, the fact that it was perfectly quiet at the foot of this mountain. You recall before starting this climb you heard no sounds or signs of a storm. There was no environmental threat. You heard only the light chirps of a few birds. The wind was gentle and the path was smooth.

As an experienced hiker you know at certain points while hiking you have to stop, rest, or even just wait right where you are currently or you’ll never make it up, let alone back down, from this venture.

Ok, now, you board a sea worthy vessel. When you are traveling by sea you acquire sea legs. Sea legs is the term given when you are trying to adjust to floating out on a massive body of water or when you are so use to being on a ship it makes it difficult to find your balance back on land.

While on this relaxing cruise a storm and rogue waves seem to come out of no where. The realization suddenly hits you like a ton of bricks, while on a ship you’re not in control at all. You trust that the Crew & Captain know what they are doing, but you know that even they can only do so much.

You’re on a ship, in an awful storm, hundreds of miles out from land. You hold on to anything close by while dealing with the motion of the ocean. Winds are soaring across the surface of the seas as fast as 100mph, stirring up waves & hitting the ship. You feel the waves rising the ship as high as 50 feet into the air, tossing this huge tin can up, down and side to side. You feel like you are a on small toy raft in a pool after someone has just done a cannonball.

No matter how experienced the Captain is, or how well trained his crew are, you, and everyone else on this boat are all at the mercy of the sea.

After an experience like that, when you reach land & get off the water, it often still feels like you’re still on that ship. You know “that ship had already sailed”; however, it takes a while for our mind & body to recover.

Looking back at the sea you see & remember the storm; but before, during & after an experiences like that we’ve got to remember that, although things are rough on the surface, deep down *underneath the surface just 100 feet down, there’s no storm. All is perfectly quiet. No sound. No tumult. Not even a ripple of turmoil.

No matter how we travel, where we fly, walk, sail or roll we will find it hard at times to endure.

In the same way, Jesus told His disciples, “You will have trouble in this world.” In fact, He claimed that some of them would be persecuted because they were His disciples. But in spite of this, He promised He’d never leave those who followed Him, and His constant presence would be the means whereby they could experience His peace. He is always right where we are, even in the storm. We can find and keep this peace of mind.

On the surface of things we are dealing with in life it may feel & seem extremely harsh and as if we won’t endure.

I read a quote recently,

“What can’t be altered must be endured and sometimes what can’t be endured must be altered.” -Neil Peart

I’m also reminded of part of the serenity prayer,

Jesus says,

No matter how strong and hard the wind of the air blows up above us, regardless of how rough the road may be under our feet, or how high waves of the sea churn, it is up to us to let God’s peace reside deep down in our hearts.

As you travel through life may you always be able to find your spiritual footing and keep on traveling until that final day upon which you reach your destination.

Destined to win in Christ, beetle

*Inspired by: day 2 of the @YouVersion plan ‘Finding Peace’.

Check it out here:

Song, “Today” by Newworldson:

Remember who and what Christ is to you.

Step and Re-step

From day 5 of 5 -“Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning • Devotional”

Rich writes about

Living out Your Relationship with God

One of the most important connections I have in my relationship with God is the Bible. I am continually amazed at how the words and ideas found in the Bible have new and practical application to the challenges I am currently facing. It’s been my experience that most times the truth I’m reading provides the adjustment I need to get back on track.

Hebrews 4:12 describes how the Bible works in my life.

For me, my faith starts with a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and I use the truth I find in the Bible to strengthen that relationship.

Matthew 5:3-6 describes the perspective I want as I reset for the next opportunity or challenge (or change) in my life.

John 4:1-38 tells a story of an interaction with Jesus and a woman. The scripture is instructive when I put myself in her position and remember that God is still alive.

These truths are vital in my relationships, the key to my faith, and are foundational to living out my relationship with God in an authentic way.

Scripture used:

“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied.
Matthew 5:3‭-‬6 NLT

Jacob’s well was there; and Jesus, tired from the long walk, sat wearily beside the well about noontime. Soon a Samaritan woman came to draw water, and Jesus said to her, “Please give me a drink.” He was alone at the time because his disciples had gone into the village to buy some food. The woman was surprised, for Jews refuse to have anything to do with Samaritans. She said to Jesus, “You are a Jew, and I am a Samaritan woman. Why are you asking me for a drink?” Jesus replied, “If you only knew the gift God has for you and who you are speaking to, you would ask me, and I would give you living water.”
John 4:6‭-‬10 NLT

I finished the Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning Bible reading plan from @YouVersion!

If you are interested in it Check it out here:

There are a great many of other devotional thought in the YouVersion app. It doesn’t matter where you go to get your daily dose of God’s Word. What is really important is that you go. Step by step, keep following Him. He gives us what we need.

Go with God, beetle

Keeping Moving Forward

From:Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning • (Devotional

Nothing can beat getting into God’s Word and letting His Word get into you.

A verse I hold onto is,

So I never lose sight of your love, But keep in step with you, never missing a beat.
Psalm 26:3 MSG

Ephesians 4:22 (EASY Translation) talks about scriptural teaching. It says, “They taught you to change the way that you live. You must put away the nature that you had before. That old nature deceived you. As a result, you wanted to do things that would destroy you.”

In day 4 of this 5 day reading plan (Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning) Rich writes,

Keeping Your Relationship with God Real

Reminding myself of Jesus’ journey on his way to the cross helps keep my relationship with him real.

Matthew 27:11-54 is a vivid account of what HE went through, and how HE responded to those who questioned HIS validity and authority. I have faced challenges from within my own heart and mind, as well as objections from others who question my relationship with God.

Knowing what the Bible says about what Jesus (and those who followed him) went through, help keep it real for me.

I can relate to the Apostle Paul, a man who was completely committed to what he believed in.

Paul’s story starts with him on a mission to kill the followers of Jesus, followed by his transformation, and eventual death for his faith. The book of Romans, especially Romans 1:16, written by Paul, is a proclamation to be all in when it comes to our relationship with God.

The importance of physical recovery, getting enough rest, resetting mentally and spiritually, is key in my life. My relationship with my wife, family, and friends are a place of refuge from the pressures of the world.

Ephesians 4:23 and Psalm 23:3 point out how a real relationship with God can help us control our attitude and effort.

Our relationship with him is what allows us to refresh and reset, it’s what gives us the ability to face new opportunity or adversity, and still move forward.

Marching along, beetle

Next Level, Opposition

This is day 3 of a 5 day reading plan called, “Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning • Devotional”

Growing Your Relationship with God

Rich writes,

There is no growth in life without facing adversity.

When our biggest hopes and dreams don’t go as planned, there is an opportunity to get to the next level in our relationship with God if we choose to lean in.

Ephesians 3:20 tells us that many times we aren’t praying the right prayers or asking the right questions. God’s ultimate outcome is one that will grow our relationship with him, strengthen our connections to our loved ones, and will ultimately serve his purpose through our lives.

It builds my confidence when I remember Romans 5:8, says that right from the start, when all we did was fail, God had already demonstrated his love and willingness to build a relationship with us. If this is true, think of how much better things can be when we intentionally grow his will for our lives.

Proverbs 16:3 asserts that if we remain committed to our relationship to God and keep connected to all we are trying to accomplish, we will see his influence in our plans.

The overwhelming struggle both my wife and I faced in becoming parents has since been replaced with an overflow of unconditional love.

Becoming a father has given me a perspective I didn’t have before my children. I love my kids with all that I am, and that love isn’t even close to perfect. Compare that to God’s perfect love for my family and I. The result is emotionally overwhelming.

For my wife and I, the hardest times resulted in more joy, fullness, and fulfillment than we ever thought possible.

1 John 5:1-5 talks about the kind of victory we can experience if we just hang in there, never lose faith or refuse to let go of our relationship with God.

In Mandarin our one word, HOPE is actually made up of 2 words, OPPOSITION & OPPORTUNITY


Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,
Ephesians 3:20 NASB

Commit your works to the Lord And your plans will be established.
Proverbs 16:3 NASB

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8 NASB

Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
1 John 5:1‭-‬5 NASB

This is from:
“Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning • Devotional”

What The World Needs (Steps We Take)

Watch “Victor Wooten 2016 Commencement Speaker for the University of Vermont Rubenstein School” on YouTube

What does the world need? It needs good people.

It takes practice, it takes us doing more than just some 12 steps.

In my life, at times, I’ve felt like I stand out like a sore thumb. I’ve been assured by ones who love me that I don’t stand out because I’m a “sore thumb” but because I am a finger that has been heal, a “Tom Thumb” that works well. I stand out because there are other “fingers” (people) who are sore.

So, soar don’t be sore.

What will you do with the amazing grace God gives you?

Jesus told a great parable about talents. In this story with a meaning he explains the importance of taking what The Master gives and investing it so that it will at least gain interest. (Matt. 25:14-30)

Shine on For God, beetle

Power House (The Electric Bill is Paid)

This is from day 2 of the @YouVersion plan ‘Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning’

Rich writes,

Testing Your Relationship with God

Any relationship that’s not continually growing or being challenged will eventually die. It’s not possible to put relationships in neutral, just as a relationship can’t be real unless it’s survived some testing. I believe this is true of all my relationships, including the one I have with God.

Matthew 11:30 reminds me that I have the ability and wherewithal to do everything God has asked me to do. With this understanding, when the test is over, I can reset knowing that I can count on God’s purpose in my life.

My relationship with God has been tested in both good and bad times. Like most of us, I know what it’s like to fail miserably and to experience the highs of success.

However, Philippians 4:12-13 emphasizes staying grounded when adversity strikes and remaining anchored in times of success.

Jeremiah 29: 11-13 helps explain the security and freedom I feel to go all in and take purposeful risks, which are often required in order to be successful. As I intentionally grow my relationship with God, I believe that he hears me. Anchored in the strength of my relationship with God and his word, I am reminded to be hopeful for the future.

Here are the verses this for devoted thought:

Jesus says,

The Apostle, St. Paul wrote,
“I know how to get along and live humbly [in difficult times], and I also know how to enjoy abundance and live in prosperity. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret [of facing life], whether well-fed or going hungry, whether having an abundance or being in need. I can do all things [which He has called me to do] through Him who strengthens and empowers me [to fulfill His purpose—I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.]”

God says,

“For I know the plans and thoughts that I have for you,’ says the Lord , ‘plans for peace and well-being and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call on Me and you will come and pray to Me, and I will hear [your voice] and I will listen to you. Then [with a deep longing] you will seek Me and require Me [as a vital necessity] and [you will] find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
JEREMIAH 29:11‭-‬13 AMP

This concludes day 2 of the @YouVersion plan ‘Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning’. This is a follow through to previous posts I’ve been writing. It is also day 2 of the 5 day reading plan, “Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning” from @YouVersion (link below):

Powered By Scripture (Day 1)

If this is of interest to you here is a link to a short 5 day reading plan, “Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning”:

How blessed we are to have a copy of God’s Word that we can hold, read, & apply.

May God continue to bless you & may you, you bless The Lord too.

For Christ sake, beetle

This is a follow through to previous posts I’ve been writing. It is also day 1 of a 5 day reading plan, “Powered by Scripture with Rich Froning” from @youversion (link below):

Next Steps

One & Done? As a follow up to walking with God ( this post by a fellow blogger is perfect.

In order to make any progress going anywhere we don’t take just one step & stop.

On that note 🎶, check this out:

Those Who Sin Differently

The story is told of a young boy who went to his first day of school.  That evening, when asked how it went, he gave a positive report about his activities that day.  The follow-up question, “What did your teacher tell you about tomorrow’s class?”, caught him off-guard, though.  He replied, “You mean I have to go back?”

Many good things in life don’t provide much benefit if we stop after one session.  One workout at the gym isn’t going to make us fit.  One visit to the doctor isn’t enough to ensure that our body remains in good health.  Going to work for a single day won’t provide a lifetime of earned income.  Giving helpful advice to our children on just one occasion won’t prepare them for adulthood.

Unfortunately, I think that some people treat their relationship with God in this way.  They accept Jesus’ offer of salvation, and…

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