Today is day two of our study of Proverbs (or should I say our month of habit forming.) Studies indicate that it takes 21 days to form a habit but it can take as little as one day to break it. As many of you know, I write this blog the night before it’s posted (there you have it, I’m not an early bird as most of you might think) and tonight I got in a bit later than I usually do. I have been writing now for 40 days without interruption and I plan to keep it that way. I had a fleeting thought to skip my blog post for the evening and just go to bed. I’m tired, my wife is tired, and she doesn’t sleep well if I’m not in bed (isn’t that sweet?). I had to remind myself, if I skip one day I am giving myself permission to skip whenever I need to. If I don’t give way to temptation than my habit continues on.
This particular nugget of wisdom can be applied to most anything. Whether you are trying to try to form a new habit, or break an old one, 21 days is all you need. If you are trying to quit smoking… make it 21 days and you should be set! If you are trying to stop eating cookies after every meal, 3 weeks and that habit should be kicked. Likewise, if you want to make it habitual to read the Word daily, the next 21 days will be vital for your spiritual life. If you skip one day, you might as well start all over again. But once you get to that 21 day mark it’s smooth sailing.
I encourage you to not only read your chapter of Proverbs for the day but to spend a few minutes in prayer about it. For instance, today’s chapter is about The Moral Benefits of Wisdom. Take a moment to pray to God for wisdom. Call out particular circumstances where you may need wisdom more than others. Men, pray that God will give you wisdom about what to watch on television. Ladies, pray God will give you wisdom about which co-workers you allow entrance into your life. I always say that when you pray, put wisdom at the top of your list. It is imperative to have wisdom in the Christian life.
Moral Benefits of Wisdom
1 My son, if you accept my words
and store up my commands within you,
2 turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding,
3 and if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding,
4 and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,
5 then you will understand the fear of the LORD
and find the knowledge of God.
6 For the LORD gives wisdom,
and from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
7 He holds victory in store for the upright,
he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless,
8 for he guards the course of the just
and protects the way of his faithful ones.
9 Then you will understand what is right and just
and fair—every good path.
10 For wisdom will enter your heart,
and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul.
11 Discretion will protect you,
and understanding will guard you.
12 Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men,
from men whose words are perverse,
13 who leave the straight paths
to walk in dark ways,
14 who delight in doing wrong
and rejoice in the perverseness of evil,
15 whose paths are crooked
and who are devious in their ways.
16 It will save you also from the adulteress,
from the wayward wife with her seductive words,
17 who has left the partner of her youth
and ignored the covenant she made before God. [a]
18 For her house leads down to death
and her paths to the spirits of the dead.
19 None who go to her return
or attain the paths of life.
20 Thus you will walk in the ways of good men
and keep to the paths of the righteous.
21 For the upright will live in the land,
and the blameless will remain in it;
22 but the wicked will be cut off from the land,
and the unfaithful will be torn from it.
Ladies, don’t forget to read Chapter 31 as well. Meditate on it and it’ll do amazing things in your life.