Skip to main content

Proverbs 14 March 2014 by Doug

Laughter is the best medicine…but it does not cure everything. In truth, some sicknesses of the heart cannot be addressed by laughter, for the there is no laughter that reaches deep enough. This is the theme of Proverbs 14:13, our verse for today. Let us take this one and see its angles.



First, there is the valuable caution that the outside does not always match the inside. People can seem happy but be eaten up inside. This is what Nehemiah experienced (read his book) and what many of us deal with in hiding emotional pain. Be careful assuming that everyone with a smile is truly happy inside.



Second, there is the warning that your joy may end. Grief follows, so chasing happy moments cannot be our primary pursuit.



Third, there is the wider application that I hinted at above. When we encounter someone with deep-seated heart pain, it’s very tempting to assume they should just get over it. When we experience it ourselves, we often compound the problem by assuming we should just get over it.



Yet the happiness on the surface has a great deal of difficulty fighting all the way down into the inside. It is far more complex than we give it credit for, and our modern tendency for platitudes over depth does not help.



It is important that we learn to fix our hearts on God and not our feelings. This is why some of the most dangerous advice in the world is to “follow your heart,” for your heart cannot even be trusted to match your face. Your heart may lead you astray if you let it roam undirected.



Fill your heart with the things of God, and then follow it when it is right on those. Otherwise, you won’t know if you are rightly laughing or hiding pain too deep to share.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book Review: The Heart Mender by @andyandrews (Andy Andrews)

The Heart Mender: A Story of Second ChancesEver read a book that you just kind of wish is true?  That's my take on The Heart Mender by Andy Andrews.  It's a charming story of love and forgiveness, and it's woven into the historical setting of World War II America.  For the narrative alone, the book is worth the read, but the message it contains is well worth absorbing as well.However, let's drop back a minute.  This book was originally published under the title Island of Saints.  I read Island of Saints and enjoyed it greatly.  Now, Andrews has released it under a new title, with a few minor changes.  All of this is explained in the Author's Note at the beginning, but should be noted for purchaser's sake.  If you read Island of Saints, you're rereading when you read The Heart Mender.  Now, go ahead and reread it.  It will not hurt you one bit.Overall, the story is well-paced.  There are points where I'd like more detail, both in the history and the geog…

Curiosity and the Faithlife Study Bible

Good morning! Today I want to take a look at the NIV Faithlife Study Bible. Rather than spend the whole post on this particular Study Bible, I’m going to hit a couple of highlights and then draw you through a few questions that I think this format helps with.



First, the basics of the NIV Faithlife Study Bible (NIVFSB, please): the translation is the 2011 New International Version from Biblica. I’m not the biggest fan of that translation, but that’s for another day. It is a translation rather than a paraphrase, which is important for studying the Bible. Next, the NIVFSB is printed in color. Why does that matter? This version developed with Logos Bible Software’s technology and much of the “study” matter is transitioning from screen to typeface. The graphics, maps, timelines, and more work best with color. Finally, you’ve got the typical “below-the-line” running notes on the text. Most of these are explanations of context or highlights of parallels, drawing out the facts that we miss by …

Foolishness: 1 Corinthians 1

In Summary: 1 Corinthians opens with the standard greeting of a letter from the Apostle Paul. He tells who he is with (Sosthenes) and who he is writing to. In this case, that is the “church of God that is in Corinth.” He further specifies that this church is made up of those who are sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be saints. 
He then expresses the blessing/greeting of “grace and peace” from God. From there, Paul reflects on his initial involvement with the Corinthian people and the beginning of the church. After that, though, there are problems to deal with and Paul is not hesitant to address them. He begins by addressing the division within the church. Apparently, the church had split into factions, some of which were drawn to various personalities who had led the church in times past. There is no firm evidence, or even a suggestion, that Paul, Cephas, Apollos, or anyone else had asked for a faction in their name. Further, the “I follow Christ” faction may not have been any le…