The Book of Proverbs gives us some amazing wisdom for life. Along with that, Solomon also exposes some common ways that people end up messing up their lives. There are many listed in this great book, but allow me to highlight five of them. Along with each point, I have included some brief comments about avoiding these disastrous mistakes in your own life.
OK, here’s how to ruin your life:
1. Live your life as if there is no God.
The greatest mistake you could ever make in your life would be to live as if there is no God. Some people choose to believe that there is no God. Big mistake. Others claim to believe in God, but they still seem to live their lives as if he does not exist. Another big mistake.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
And the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. (NKJV)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. (NKJV)
He who walks with integrity walks securely,
But he who perverts his ways will become known. (NKJV)
2. Choose people who are spiritually foolish to be your closest friends.
You are basically a composite of the five friends you choose to spend the most time with. It is important to choose them well. John Kuebler once made the great statement, “Show me your friends, and I will show you your future.”
He who walks with wise men will be wise,
But the companion of fools will be destroyed. (NKJV)
3. Never learn to control your emotions.
Many people seem to live with the misguided notion that it is healthy to just let your emotions go with whatever you are feeling. “Just let it out!” However, the Bible tells us that it is a position of great strength and character to learn how to control your emotions. I have never met a truly happy person who fails to control his/her emotions.
A fool vents all his feelings,
But a wise man holds them back. (NKJV)
He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
And he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city. (NKJV)
Whoever has no rule over his own spirit
Is like a city broken down, without walls. (NKJV)
4. Stay down once you have fallen down.
Everyone fails at various points in their lives. But not everyone gets back up after they have fallen. The ability to get back up once you have fallen is one of the greatest indicators of your overall success in life. Never, ever give up. Whether you stumble spiritually or with some other area of your life, always be sure to get back up when you fail.
The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again.
But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked. (NLT)
5. Fail to spend your entire life learning.
Wisdom and great success in life tend to follow those who are on a lifelong pursuit of knowledge. I once had a professor who told me in relation to learning that, “You should get all you can, can all you get, and sit on the can.”
If you’ve made it through the list to this point, then I will give you a “bonus” way to ruin your life (straight from the words of Proverbs)!
Disregard God’s principles for financial stewardship.
God’s Word is so amazingly practical that He has even given us many, many great principles that apply to our finances. Soak them in and thrive. Reject them, and you will struggle perpetually.
Will you set your eyes on that which is not?
For riches certainly make themselves wings;
They fly away like an eagle toward heaven. (NKJV)
The rich rules over the poor,
And the borrower is servant to the lender. (NKJV)
It’s poor judgment to guarantee another person’s debt
or put up security for a friend. (NLT)
Tainted wealth has no lasting value,
but right living can save your life. (NLT)
6 Take a lesson from the ants, you lazybones.
Learn from their ways and become wise!
7 Though they have no prince
or governor or ruler to make them work,
8 They labor hard all summer,
gathering food for the winter. (NLT)
Lazy people want much but get little,
but those who work hard will prosper. (NLT)
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