June 27, 2014

Proverbs 29:6 An evil man is snared by his own sin,
but a righteous one can sing and be glad.

This particular theme is expressed in Proverbs in 11:3 and elsewhere, and the general principle appears throughout the Bible. We can certainly see it in action all around us! I honestly wonder how intentionally devious people make it through life. It seems to me that they would be consumed with trying to keep their various stories straight! The image in this verse of people setting traps for themselves is very clear, as well as accurate. To be honest, there is a real sense of satisfaction sometimes in seeing people get caught in their own traps. However, the far more desirable outcome is repentance, turning away from evil. Sometimes God allows us to get caught in the nets we weave specifically to give us an opportunity to see ourselves honestly so that we may repent. We need to make full use of such opportunities! When we see others caught in their own nets, we need to pray first for their repentance, and not with a vindictive spirit, either. After all, we’ve all been there! If we want a life of joy ourselves, we need to focus on our own obedient relationship to God. If we are really doing that, then we will desire that others join us in that lifestyle, and not desire their destruction.

I’ve never had the kind of “success” the tabloids are interested in, but my life is the envy of quite a few people who know me. I can say that it comes from an attitude of gratitude for the grace of God. If I start taking these blessings for granted, thinking I’ve earned them, then I’m simply making a net for myself. I am to ask God for His purpose for each thing He gives me, and apply myself to use it for that purpose. I am to pray for those around me who don’t have a right relationship with God, that they would wake up to their need and God’s supply, and repent and believe for their salvation. In my daily living, I am not to focus on things that feel negative, but rather ask God what good purpose He has in allowing them, so that I may cooperate with that purpose. I do delight to sing for joy, as the NIV puts it, and I am to invite all who will to join me in that song.

Father, thank You for Your overflowing grace on so many levels. Thank You that my younger daughter and two grandsons are here, and for all that You are doing in this experience, for them and for us. Help us all rest, relax, and rejoice in You, allowing You to do in and through us all that You desire, not simply for us as active participants, but for those who are touched by us as well, for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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