Read Proverbs 1:1-6
"The proverbs of Solomon, son of David, king of Israel: To know wisdom and instruction, to understand words of insight, to receive instruction in wise dealing, in righteousness, justice, and equity; to give prudence to the simple, knowledge and discretion to the youth-- Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance, to understand a proverb and a saying, the words of the wise and their riddles."
Read Proverbs 1:1-6. Here Solomon (the author of the book) explains why it's important to take the advice given here. Verse 3 sums it up nicely: "Through these proverbs, people will receive instruction in discipline, good conduct, and doing what is right, just, and fair." Though words like "discipline" and "instruction" don't sound very much fun, can you imagine how nice your neighborhood would be if everyone there lived up to these words?
In nearly every movie or TV show that involves a wedding, there's usually a scene where the groom-to-be and his buddies mourn the loss of the groom's independence. No longer a free man, he will soon be bound to the "ball-and-chain"; no more late nights with the guys, no more wild parties, no more...fun.
Not everyone is that cynical. But it can probably be taken as fact that everyone at some point fondly remembers the carefree days of youth. The days before mortgage payments, child-raising, and dealing with family troubles, at times seem very attractive. In fact some people refuse to leave those days. But if you've ever seen an adult behaving like a teenager, you know it's kind of sad.
Growing up is a fact of life. But it doesn't have to be a drag. Though new responsibilities may come each day and new priorities have to be set, there is a guide to help you in making the best possible choice each and every time. Of course, that guide is the Bible. The Bible even has a section devoted to helping us make the tough decisions of life called the Book of Proverbs.
Let's look at some of the things that change as we get older and see what Proverbs has to say about them. Relationships are one thing that noticeably changes. Constantly playing may be alright for kids, but adults need more in their relationships; they need someone to talk to, they need encouragement. Sometimes they need a friend's perspective to help them steer clear of a disastrous situation.
Proverbs 27:17 says "As iron sharpens iron a friend sharpens a friend" (NLT) In other words, friends build each other up. If you're using your friends only to hang out with but not investing in their lives, are you truly being a friend?
Money becomes a big responsibility as we grow up. As soon as a person gets their first job, they find out there's many people wanting your money just as much as you. Sometimes those "get rich quick!" plans look tempting, but here's what Proverbs says. "Wealth from get-rich-quick schemes quickly disappear; wealth from hard work grows" (Proverbs 13:11, NLT).
Lord, thank you for not leaving me to figure out life on my own. Help me to understand your will and give me the courage when it's not easy to follow. Amen.