As I continue my quest to read through the Bible chronologically this year, lately I have been in Proverbs and Ecclesiastes. It is hard to believe that I am pretty much at the half way point already. A few minutes a day just keeps adding up!
I enjoy both of these books and am always struck by how, each time I go through them, something new seems to stand out. It is not as though new material has been added since the last time I read them, but nevertheless, something catches my attention like it was never there before.
I have also had to do some funerals lately. That is never a fun task, but it has been even more of a challenge within the context of COVID-19. It is hard to see families grieving in the isolation that is required of us at this point, and I have been able to understand the value of bearing one another’s burdens more through this. Something I am reminded of when I do a funeral is Ecclesiastes 7:2. There it says words to the effect that it is better to go to a funeral than to go to a party, because death is the destiny of everyone and the living should think about that.
My point is not to make this blog a real downer, but rather to note the value of these two books in helping to actually implement that advice. If we are careful to actually read them, I think both Proverbs and Ecclesiastes help us to examine our lives. And hopefully then, to make adjustments to bring ourselves in line before we arrive at our own funeral.
As I went through this time, one of the verses that struck me was Proverbs 27:19… “As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.” As I read that, it caught my attention like it was there for the first time.
I have always agreed with the axiom of, “Show me what you do and I will show you what you believe.” This rounded that idea out a little more. Good or bad, my life reflects what is in my heart. Maybe it was that I was working on the wise and foolish builder passage of the Sermon on the Mount at the same time, but it just really hit home. I can’t only say I believe God, I have to do what he calls me to and in the way that he calls me to do it.
Long story short, I do what I believe. I do what comes from my heart of hearts, so my life does reflect my heart. That leads me to be thinking more lately about what my life looks like. And, as is most often my experience with God and his word, I have to concede that my life shows that my heart needs work. That hurts a little to recognize. But at least I have the chance to work on it before I arrive at my funeral.