Trouble Trap

Proverb 21: 23         God’s Word

Whoever guards his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.

What do we need to say about this verse? Most of us, when we think back on occasions where we have gotten ourselves in trouble, will acknowledge that it usually was from something we said. We are more likely to offend someone by what we say than any other way.

I think the secret to guarding one’s mouth is in getting some help. Psalm 141: 3 is just such an entreaty, “Set a guard, Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips.” In my case, it takes the power of the Almighty to keep my mouth out of trouble and even then, it can still be a challenge, but this is a worthy subject for prayer. If we don’t actively set that guard over our mouths and tongues, we are sure to stumble into trouble.

Lips of Abundance

Proverb 10: 21

The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of understanding.
In this proverb Solomon contrasts the righteous and the wicked. I am gratified to learn that the lips of the righteous feeds many. I imagine that the lips of the righteous is a blessing which flows out to the city and surrounding area. Words of righteousness create a wellspring of blessing. That is really good news. Now we just have to find a few righteous people. Righteousness is in Christ Jesus which I will explain in tomorrow’s Word of the Day.
Unfortunately, many of us are surrounded by the fools. What is the relationship between these two phrases? It must be that the lips of fools bring famine and lack. I completely believe that. So here is the problem. If you are working in an organization full of people who lack understanding then you are going to corporately experience famine. Even worse, this verse says that fools die because of this lack of understanding. What then do you think is the net effect on the organization of which they are a part? The worst part of this is that there are churches which operate under a complete lack of understanding. 
Why does Solomon use these words and why does he use them together? First, I think he is telling us that not submitting ourselves individually and corporately to teaching is foolishness and leads to malnutrition and ultimately to death. Fools are those who are unwilling to be educated. They know everything and no one can teach them anything. Wise leaders are constantly learning and the wisest of leaders provide learning opportunities for their people. 
How many people do you know who subject themselves to a program of learning? How many people defy the teachings of their bosses and even their pastors. Sure, no person knows everything but there are people with much wisdom and knowledge. No matter how much we think we know, we can still be instructed. There is always someone who can lead us into greater truth.

If you are the smartest and most knowledgeable person in your sphere then you need desperately to widen your sphere. Don’t be foolish. Don’t continue in a lack of understanding. Find teachers and voraciously consume all you can. The key question is not whether or not you agree. The key is always, “Father, what can you teach me from this?”  Be a student all the days of your life and add prosperity and abundance to your life and those around you.