Prophetic Momentum

Jon Cressey writing mostly about church, prophets and prophecy...

The raging heart

Raging heartThere’s a proverb written by Solomon that I have never seen quoted or heard a sermon on, and at first glance it easy to pass over it but I think if you have a few moments, it’s worth thinking about.

Whether you are experiencing personal challenges, or simply seeking guidance for what God is doing in your life, this proverb can inspire and encourage you, not at first – but with patience it will yield it’s treasure and begin to speak to you.

Proverbs 19:3 “When a man’s folly brings his way to ruin his heart rages against the Lord.”

I knew you wouldn’t be impressed, but here’s why it is a tonic for you, so consider the favourable outcome: “When a wise man brings his way to blessing his heart worships the Lord!”

The importance of wisdom

This short verse in proverbs calls us to be mindful of our actions and the choices we make, recognizing that foolishness can lead to our own calamity or downfall and cause us to become angry with God. It’s not just about getting angry with God but the accompanying actions that can also result including bitterness, resentment and disillusionment and that foolishness leads to more foolishness.

An Open AgendaA heart raging against God is not good. Neither is the folly that brings ruin. We are not told what that folly is, but it seems that it is not a casual shoe-lace trip, but a determined, careless lack of wisdom. Folly is defined as a lack of good sense, the condition of being foolish and what is so remarkable about it is the book of proverbs is full of wisdom so that one does not have to fall prey to foolishness.

The problem is a foolish person is not always aware they are being, well, foolish. The Apostle James advises us emphatically, “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him.” (James 1:5) You may be unconsciously foolish, but if you are consciously foolish then here’s the answer that will adjust and transform your life – ask God for wisdom! God is abundantly generous, he will give it to you, no questions asked! You have to have faith that God will answer your prayer, but that’s it – ask! When a wise man brings his way to blessing his heart worships the Lord!

The consequences of foolishness

Proverbs 19:3 serves as a reminder for all of us to be mindful of our actions and decisions, and to take responsibility for the consequences that come our way. Rather than blaming others or raging against the Lord (However, that would manifest itself – whether in prayerlessness, lethargy, or a lukewarm heart.), We should strive to use wisdom and make wise choices that lead to a fulfilling and successful life. By recognizing our folly and the impact, it has on our life we can learn from mistakes, grow in wisdom, and avoid repeating the same mistakes in the future.

When faced with the consequences of our mistakes, we are reminded that God has given us free will and the power to make choices that shape our life. It is easy to blame others for our problems, but this verse reminds us that our own lack of wisdom can lead to our downfall. Poor choices and foolish behaviour open the door to trouble and harm, so we must take responsibility for the choices we make, good or bad, and their consequences.

The heart is revealed through our actions, something that Dietrich Bonhoeffer emphasized in his book “The Cost of Discipleship,” where he writes, “Only he who believes is obedient, and only he who is obedient believes.”

The relationship with God

The truth is, God is not trying to catch us out. He is Wisdom personified and the life we are called to is one of intimacy with Him, and in so doing we are constantly being changed and transformed by the work Of the Spirit in our lives, but we do need to cooperate with the Spirit, neither grieving or quenching Him. God has a plan for us of grace, provision and kindness not just for this year, but for decades to come. The challenges that the church may face like a high cost of living, extortionate energy prices, and political instability, including the threat of war expanding across Europe, can be overwhelming. We must remind ourselves that the Lord is in control, and we are urged to seek His wisdom in all things. Accompanying the promise of James 1:5 is this remarkable verse, “For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (Proverbs 2:6)

So, let us walk in the confidence that comes from knowing that God is always with us, guiding us through the trials and tribulations of life and make a sustained effort to walk in the wisdom that God gives. Real wisdom, not “Failing to plan, is planning to fail” stuff! As we seek His wisdom and trust in His plan, we can rest assured He will bring us through the challenges ahead, no matter how overwhelming they may seem. Don’t allow moments of folly to wreck your life and make your heart rage against God. Talk to your elders and leaders and be humble to receive correction, guidance or encouragement, especially with prayer. By embracing the work of the Spirit in our lives and clinging to the promises of God’s Word, we will be transformed and empowered to live a life of grace, provision, and kindness.

JonMay we never forget the Lord is in control and that He gives us wisdom and understanding; and press forward in faith, knowing He has a plan for us that is full of hope and purpose, now and for all the years to come.

The raging heart
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