Proverbs 13-16

Do you have a merry heart? Do you find humor even during the tough days? Do you laugh often? Laughter is like a medicine to us.

In recent years, many medical journals have reported on the importance of joy and laughter in physical health. Happy people generally suffer less illness and when they do get ill, recover faster.

It’s always interesting to me to see the many Biblical principles which “suddenly” appear in research as new-found truths. They have been there all along – in God’s great book of wisdom.

There is a definite spirit-mind-body connection, so that what affects one will affect the others. That’s why “hope deferred” makes the heart sick (13:12). That’s also why good news “makes your bones fat.” (15:30) (Bone marrow is the source of your healthy blood supply).

As we follow the principles laid out for us, we will be healthier all around.

One more note: twice during these proverbs do we get a certain message. “There is a way which seems right to a man, but the end of it is death.” (14:12; 16:25).

That could be, in a nutshell, what we have attempted to say over and over. If you just go by what “seems right” to the world, you are probably going down the wrong path – and it will eventually catch up with you. For instance, the social drink and happy hour may have seemed right. But to the alcoholic whose life has been shattered by it, it’s not as “happy” as they thought it would be.

Or maybe all of those extra pieces of pie, fried food, and gravy “seem right” at the time. But there is payback coming. Watch for it.

There are many other paths which lead to death. Greed, dishonest gain, strife, and many others.

God’s path is always a good path. There may be moments of trouble or sadness, which come to every life, but as we proceed down His path, we will see the wisdom He provides.

II Corinthians 6

Yesterday we talked about the new creation we become when we accept Jesus. Today, we read where Paul admonishes us to continue to live like the new person and not the old.

There are some who come to the Lord, but continue in their old ways. They allow their old friends to influence them to turn back to the sinful lives they once had. That’s not God’s way. He wants you to influence your friends, and not the other way around.

When people turn back to their old ways, they start disrespecting those who have influenced their growth. That’s what Paul was dealing with in this chapter. So he lists the many trials he has suffered for the sake of getting the gospel to the Corinthians.

Paul speaks of having been beaten, pursued by angry mobs, put in prison, worked to exhaustion, and gone without sleep or food in order to bring the gospel to these people. Yet they are now dishonoring him because of the company they keep.

He reminds these Corinthians that God has spoken to His people to “come out from among the unbelievers.” (V. 17)

There is a holiness which our God provides which is anathema to the way of the world. If we are not influencing others for Christ, they are influencing us to turn away.

It’s something to think about for our own lives. Who are you running with? It says something about you.