4/29/05

Encouragement for Today

 

“You Can Prosper” 

By Rachel Olsen, ETC Editor, Proverbs 31 Speaker Team Member

 

Key Verse:

 

He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither.  Whatever he does prospers.  Psalm 1:3 (NIV)

 

Devotion:

 

Is everything you’re doing prospering?

 

Does even half of what you do prosper?

 

Is anything you are doing prospering?

 

Would you like to have everything you do prosper?  I know I would, and the first Psalm says it is possible... for the person who is blessed.  Ah, for the person who is blessed, huh?  So that’s the catch!  You may have decided a long time ago that you are not one of those people who happens to be blessed.

 

I have some good news.  Whether or not we are “blessed” is not dependent on some cosmic chance, or spiritual lottery, but on our own actions and choices.  You and I can be blessed women who prosper in all that we do!

 

Let’s look at today’s verse in the context of the two preceding verses.   Verse one of the first Psalm says, “Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers” (NIV).  In other words, blessed is the person who doesn’t follow worldly advice.  Blessed is the person who doesn’t hang around sinful situations - without confronting the sin in love.  Blessed is the person who doesn’t wield a sarcastic or mocking attitude like a sword.  In sum, verse one reveals the blessed woman will choose wise friends, will model Godly behaviors wherever she goes, and will display a humble attitude towards God and graciousness towards others.

 

How can a gal consistently think, say, and do all of these Godly things which result in blessing?  Verse two tells us how: the blessed delight “in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.” (NIV)  So the blessed woman gains her ability to make right choices, gains her courage to stand up to sin, and gains her humble and gracious mind set by regularly reading and obeying the Word of God.

 

When I would hear people speak of meditating on the Word of God daily, I was never quite sure how to do that… did it require me twisting into some unnatural sitting position and reaching some Zen-like state of consciousness?  Would it take hours out of my day – I have young children at home to care for after all.  After some study I found that to meditate on something simply means to think, consider, ponder, contemplate, mull over, and perhaps memorize it.  All I have to do is read a passage of Scripture each morning and then think about it during the day while I blow dry my hair, drive carpool, vacuum, cook dinner, wash dishes and relax with my nightly cup of tea.  Then the Scriptures really sink into my day and into my heart - influencing my thoughts and actions. 

 

When we are daily reading and ordering our life according to Godly principals – such as the seven principals of the Proverbs 31 woman - we can be sure that God will bring about His prosperous plans for our lives. (Jeremiah 29:11)  Then, we will become like stately trees, planted on the banks of the river of God, lush and green.  In time, everything we do will yield beautiful, juicy, ripe results. 

 

My Prayer for Today:

 

Lord, I want to be a woman who makes right choices.  I want to be blessed and prosper in accordance with Your will.  Please develop in me a passion for Your Word, and remind me to think upon it day and night - in Jesus’ name.

 

Application Steps: 

 

Devise several ways to get Scripture before your eyes day and night.  Ideas could include posting Scriptures on your fridge, keeping a small devotional book in your bag, buying a page-a-day Christian calendar, and keeping a Bible on your desk or kitchen table to read during coffee breaks.

 

Reflection Points:   

 

Do you feel blessed?  Prosperous?

 

Are you “meditating on God’s word day and night?”

 

What does “prospering” mean to you?

 

How does God describe “prospering” in the Bible?

                    

Power Verses: 

 

Romans 12:2, Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is - his good, pleasing and perfect will. (NIV)

 

Psalm 37:23-25, When a person’s steps follow the Lord, God is pleased with his ways.  If he stumbles, he will not fall, because the Lord holds his hand.  I was young, and now I am old, but I have never seen good people left helpless or their children begging for food. (NCV)

 

Psalm 128:2, You will eat the fruit of your labor, blessings and prosperity will be yours. (NIV)

 

3 John 1:2, Dear friend, I pray that you may prosper in every way and be in good health, just as your soul prospers. (HSC)

 

Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (NIV)

     

Additional Resources: 

 

Radically Obedient, Radically Blessed by Lysa TerKeurst

http://www.gospelcom.net/p31/resources/radical.html

 

P31 Woman Magazine

http://www.gospelcom.net/p31/woman.htm