A Trek Through Proverbs: Advice from Wise Old Men to Practically Everyone
“No plot. No stories. No characters. Proverbs has none of it,” says Stephen Miller. But the contents, mostly attributed to Solomon and written 3,000 years ago, has something for everyone. It’s mostly a book of snappy one-liners about work, raising kids, marriage, money, patience, settling disputes, basic street smarts, and good ‘ol wisdom-versus-foolishness in the journey of life. But be forewarned, read Proverbs wisely . . . spouting some of the one-liners without a deeper understanding of their context and the culture they were written in will quickly land you on the hotseat of life.
But that said, I was recently encouraged to read the thirty-one chapters of Proverbs (one per day for a month) and it’s been a worthwhile investment. Proverbs are an easy read, maybe fifteen minutes per chapter per day. My first “re-discovery” was that I’d been In Proverbs many times before (based on the dates and notes penned in the margins). Underlined were things like, “Get wisdom, get understanding . . . Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you; love her and she will watch over you” (Prov. 4:5-6) and, “Whoever loves discipline, loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid” (Prov. 12:1). Yup, “stupid,” that’s what it says!
Today was chapter 23 and I’m also discovering this . . . Proverbs calm me down and make me think about life change and behaviors I should challenge. They’re chock-full of life application insights and counsel on “life lived wisely.” The most calming insight? Probably the knowledge and comfort that I’m intimately acquainted with—and trust—the One who oversees my journey in life . . . and who appoints every pivot point on the trek. “In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps” (Prov. 16:9).
God’s grace and favor is overwhelmingly evident in my life . . . and yes, so is the bitter-sweet fruit of the circumstances that brought me to my knees. We encounter both in this broken world!
 Miller, Steven M. The Complete Guide to the Bible, Ohio: Barbour Publishing, 2017.