16 A woman who has a kind heart gains honor.
But men who are not kind gain only wealth.
17 Those who are kind benefit themselves.
But mean people bring ruin on themselves.
18 An evil person really earns nothing.
But the one who plants what is right will certainly be rewarded.
19 Surely right living leads to life.
But whoever runs after evil finds death.
20 The Lord hates those whose hearts are twisted.
But he is pleased with those who live without blame.
21 You can be sure that sinners will be punished.
And you can also be sure that godly people will go free.
22 A beautiful woman who has no sense
is like a gold ring in a pig’s nose.
23 What godly people long for ends only in what is good.
But what sinners hope for ends only in God’s anger.
24 One person gives freely but gets even richer.
Another person doesn’t give what they should but gets even poorer.
25 Anyone who gives a lot will succeed.
Anyone who renews others will be renewed.
26 People ask for bad things to happen to those who store up grain for themselves.
But people ask for God’s blessing on those who are willing to sell.
27 Anyone who looks for what is good will be blessed.
But bad things will happen to a person who plans to do evil.
28 Those who trust in their riches will fall.
But those who do right will be as healthy as a green leaf.
29 Those who bring ruin on their families will receive nothing but wind.
And foolish people will serve wise people.
30 The fruit that godly people bear is like a tree of life.
And those who are wise save lives.
31 Godly people get what they should get on earth.
So ungodly people and sinners will certainly get what they should get!
Lord, thank You for this passage of scripture. There’s just so much here, that to unpack it within a prayer would take forever, because there is so much wisdom in Your word and Lord, I do pray that for my listeners today that they would fall in love with spending time with You, every day in Your word. It is living, it is active, it is able to divide between our motivations, it exposes things in us, it shows us Your majesty, it reveals Your great, grand story of redemption throughout the Old and New Testament. Lord, help us to fall in love with the Old Testament, help us to follow in love with the wisdom literature, help us to fall in love with the gospel. We know that that is where true life is. Lord, I pray for kindness today, this passage comes out of the gate with kindness, we want to be a people that are kind. This is an unkind world. If we are treated with unkindness today, I pray that we will retaliate in kindness, that we will return vindictiveness with kindness, mean words with kind words and that we would receive from you the kindness because it is because of Your kindness that we are in a relationship with You. We have received your kindness and now let us dole it out in abundance. Lord, we also want to live right, we want to not be twisted, we want to represent You beautifully, we want to give freely and that’s why I want to cantharis my prayer today. Lord, help us to have open hands, help us to see needs and meet them. Lord, help us to be generous. I love verse 25, “Anyone who renews others will be renewed” and other versions say, “He who refreshes others, will be refreshed” So Lord, we need refreshment and so I understand that to be refreshed, we have to be refreshing others. So help us too be that today in every situation that we face. Help us to ask the question, “How can I renew this person in front of me? How can I refresh my friend? How can I be a blessing to the people that I am living with, that I am loving, that I am interacting with?” We want to be people of refreshment, we know that all comes from You, so we give You all the glory today for what You are going to do through us and we pray that we would be a spot of light in someone else’s dark world. Lord, we love You, we praise You, we worship You in Jesus name, Amen.
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