“A person’s own foolishness leads him astray, yet his heart rages against the Lord.” – Proverbs 19:3 (CSB)
No one likes to be told what to do. We want to make our own decisions. We think we know what is best for our lives. Whether it’s our finances, sexuality, job, marriage, or some other aspect of our lives, we want to be the final arbiter of what is best for us. We want to follow our heart wherever it leads. Then, when that backfires, we have the audacity to blame God for our struggles.
Solomon recognized the hypocrisy in this. When we live the way we want and experience the consequences, it makes no sense to blame God and get angry at him. If we had simply followed his word in the first place, we wouldn’t have caused ourselves heartache and problems.
Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the LORD weighs the heart. – Proverbs 21:2 (ESV)
We naturally assume we are right. We assume our opinions are right. We assume our decisions are right. We assume our motives are right. But in the end, only one knows what is truly going on inside of us. Only one knows whether our heart is in the right place. Only one can see past the facade. And only one perfectly loves us through it all.
It’s leap day and you only get one shot every four years to post on this day. In keeping with theme, let’s talk about those times when we must take “a leap of faith.” Not an everyday decision to do something but rather a life-altering, “you want me to do what Lord!?” kind of decision. One of the problems with American Christianity is our desire to play it safe. We would rather sit in the boat with the 11 disciples then get out of the boat like Peter did. Biblical faith calls us to something more. It calls us to follow our Savior even when it seems risky to do so. But stepping out in faith and taking a risk is not the same as being reckless.
Sometimes people couch their impulsive decisions as taking a leap of faith. To be honest, I’ve done it before. But it’s not right to make unwise decision and throw them back on God when they don’t work out the way we hoped. This is where Proverbs is so helpful. We are consistently reminded throughout the book that wisdom is found in a multitude of counselors. When God calls us to do something big – something that requires a leap of faith – he will often confirm that through the wise counsel of those who know us, love us, and care about us most.
“Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.” (Proverbs 17:27 ESV) This is sound advice for all of us to follow. It’s especially good advice in an election year.
The political climate in America has been toxic for quite some time now. But this election seems to have taken things to a new level. There is no place for harsh, vulgar speech in any realm of life. It’s especially unwarranted and unbecoming by those in a position of or aspiring to leadership. Candidates would do well in many situations to keep their mouth shut. So too would supporters when speaking to or about people who have different opinions.