Tag - proverbs

A Fool’s Path
A Fool’s Temper
A Fool’s Words
Would a Fool Do That?
Matters of the Heart, a Poem

A Fool’s Path


A wise man is cautious and turns from evil…a man’s own foolishness leads him astray.
– Proverbs 14:6a & 19:3a

When I think about Jesus’ call on our life to enter in the narrow gate and avoid the broad path that leads to destruction (Matthew 7), I congratulate myself for choosing the narrow path when I was seven. Once on the narrow path, always on the narrow path…right?

As I continue to follow Christ into adulthood, I am learning that every decision I make creates a new path in my life. But this metaphorical narrow path has exit signs every two minutes or so inviting me to inadvertently merge onto the broad path.

Proverbs instructs us that a wise man turns away from evil whereas a foolish man turns toward it and is led astray. Vague definitions and descriptions of “evil” create barriers for us to reflect on this warning personally. We tend to think, “Of course I’m not running toward EVIL!”

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A Fool’s Temper

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“You make me so…so…ANGRY!! *laughter* I’m angry!”My mother’s favorite quote from Enchanted comes from this video clip where Giselle experiences anger in the real world for the first time. In her animated world, anger doesn’t exist as one of her emotions.

Unfortunately, you and I don’t live in the angry-free 2-dimensional world of talking chipmunks either. We face daily situations that rattle us to the core, raising our blood pressure as well as the volume of our voices.

The book of Proverbs has a multitude of verses on anger, but we’ll focus on just two that relate anger with foolishness

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A Fool’s Words

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We all wish we had kept our mouth shut from time to time but we don’t often assign the word “foolish” to our words. The book of Proverbs has approximately 15 verses with the word “foolish” in them that relate directly to how a fool uses his or her words.

If we don’t want to be a fool, then we need to know what a fool is characterized by.

1. A fool uses his or her mouth for self-righteousness. I worked for an employer during my time in college who refused to begin a sentence with the word “I.” He felt as though it assigned too much worth to himself. Though I found writing letters on his behalf difficult, I did appreciate that he took intentional steps toward humility.

A fool does not delight in understanding, but only wants to show off his opinions.
-Proverbs 18:2

 2. A fool can argue about anything. And may I add, loudly. A fool doesn’t pick a well-crafted argument and hold a logical discussion. Today, we see fools all over social media platforms in particular. Any fool can leave an abrasive comment on a post, but how many hearts are changed via an angry status?

It is honorable for a man to resolve a dispute, but any fool can get himself into a quarrel.
-Proverbs 20:3

3. Even a rich fool is miserable company. On a walk this weekend, I joked with my husband that we should knock on the door at this one house and become their friends simply based on the fact they had a boat stored in their garage and a friendship could lead to an invite out on the boat. But I would rather be poor with my honest, loyal friends as we sit in the living room eating popcorn than spend an evening trapped on a yacht with a rich person who is a fool. Spending time around foolish people wears me out; no amount of money could cause me to constantly spend time with them.

Better a poor man who lives with integrity than someone who has deceitful lips and is a fool.
-Proverbs 19:1

It’s easy to read through these three characteristics of a fool’s words and think of other people in your life that fit them perfectly. But it’s harder to reflect on our own mouth and unveil our own foolish tendencies. A characteristic of a wise person is to approach a list like this and apply it to themselves. Let’s commit ourselves for the weekend to pay attention to our mouths and come back together for the next blog with the counter-characteristic of a Wise Person’s Words.

Would a Fool Do That?

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The word “fool” has bounced around in my head a lot over the last few weeks. And that’s one of the reasons there has been a brief period of silence from my regular blogging schedule. Everytime I started to write, all my thoughts and sentiments felt foolish. Rather than forge ahead with my words, I spent more time reading Scripture and almost none writing. I read through Proverbs twice.

This blog series is dedicated to “A Season for Wisdom” but the last two weeks have left me contemplating the opposite – foolishness.

A fool is any person who acts unwisely, imprudently, or with the intent to trick or deceive someone. With several of our youth students, the ultimate insult is to accuse them of acting like a fool.

In the words of Dwight Schrute, the most inspiring thing Michael Scott ever said to him was, “Don’t be an idiot…Whenever I am about to do something, I think – would an idiot do that? – and if they would, I do not do that thing.”

I counted the word fool or foolishness 79 times in these 31 chapters. 27 of them come from chapters 14-17 alone. That’s 1/3 of the uses in only 3 chapters!

So we’re going to transition to a time in this series of asking ourselves the Dwight Schrute test question – would a fool do that? – if so, we are not going to do that thing.

But first, we will study the character traits of a fool. So make sure you’re signed up to have these blogs delivered to your inbox, it would be foolish not to!

Matters of the Heart, a Poem


A poem for the Proverbs series inspired by Proverbs 7:3b “Write them on the tablet of your heart.” 

Each spoken word, a mallet.
Tink. Tinktink.
Frenzy of chisels
etch the surface,
carve ruts which brim
with scripted flakes
of writing. Unmuzzled
thoughts split the tablet to pieces.

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