Last Monday night our pastor began a series on Proverbs. Yes, we go to a church on Monday night, short version: hubby worked as Building administrator at a church that drifted far from Scripture, so we found a Monday night service in a good Bible Church. We left the other church, but loved the people on Monday night so stayed going to that service.
Now, where was I? Oh yes, Proverbs. At the end of the service, he assigned each of us a chapter in Proverbs to read and find 2 proverbs from our chapter that we can share with everyone next week.
My chapter was 15. I have been reading it about every day and praying for what proverbs I should bring to the group next week. I still do not know what ones I will bring, but I want to share one with you now.
2The tongue of the wise makes knowledge acceptable,
But the mouth of fools spouts folly.
I have been reading this chapter for over a week now, but something happened this weekend that made this verse stand out to me today. I realized how we as wives, moms, friends and strangers can say things and not have them accepted. I realize we can say things harsh, angry, silly and foolishly.
This weekend I did something that hit me today. I was not wise in the way I said something and it made my knowledge unacceptable to the ears that heard it.
First I need to share a difference between my husband and I. I was raised in a Christian home. My parents took me to church from the time I was little and I have always gone. I began to have my own ministry at age 16 when I led the 3rd grade Pioneer Girls club. No one else was available and willing and I was. From then on I always had ministries I was involved in. I married a pastor, we were in different church circles and knew pastors and churches with all different beliefs and preaching styles. When my husband died I went to different churches trying to find my place and learned a lot of what was “book knowledge” first hand. I saw how different churches used same terms with a twist and how they could mean so much different.
My years of church involvement and meeting people coming into our church from all walks of life and church experiences as well as listening to many many preachers, I have come to knowing what certain phrases mean and what “camp” it puts a church or preacher in. Certain phrases point to liberalism, conservatism, fundamental, super fundamental, charismatic, prosperity Gospel or the such. I hear things and my ears pick up the flags from the camps.
My second husband was not raised in the church. He knows none of the phrases and is only learning the differences now. He studies and is a very intellegent man, but does not have the experience and knowledge I have in these areas.
I was at the old church about a month when I could tell you what camp that pastor was in. I could tell you where he was headed and what deep apostasy he was moving to. And, I did tell Rick. Told him every time we heard the pastor talk or preach. I pointed it out, loud and clear. Rick only knew that teaching. He had no experience or knowledge that there was anything wrong and since at that point he knew nothing of how to study the Bible in a discerning way, he could not see what I was saying.
Fight? Yup. Every time! Until I got wise. I shut up and began to pray for Rick to see the truth. It took some time, but he finally did. In praying I was led to teach a small group in this church. I did not know if they would even let me and they had me targeted, but my group proposal was not to teach people what to believe but rather, how to study the Bible to be like the Bereans.
10The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.11Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so.(Acts 17:10-11)
Rick came to the class, at first just to support me, but then he got into it when others started seeing the pastor was not teaching right. Not because I told them, I never did, but because the Bible told them. Rick took off then and studied harder and found truth.
So, what happened this weekend?
We are church hunting for something close that we can go to on Sunday. We still want to go on Monday, but the church is 75 miles away and we can’t be involved like we would like. In going to churches we are finding that the Word of God is not being preached in most of them. Small sermonettes, devotionals, talks to not offend anyone. No doctrine. (In fact, I ask for doctrinal statements from churches and you would be surprised what happens! I am ignored, not responded to, or, in one case, asked “What is that?” Hmmm a church that has no written beliefs? Did Christ not say to pay attention and preach doctrine?)
OOPs, off the subject…
OK, we are visiting churches and in sitting there so many of them give away their “camp” subtly. I pick up on it and then say something to Rick. I am doing it from experience that he does not have. My knowledge is not coming out as acceptable. Instead of talking about it in a way that will be acceptable, I spout out.
When reading that proverb today I wonder how many times as a wife, mom, friend etc I have spouted out and made truth and knowledge unacceptable to the ears that were hearing it?
I know it takes two and many times we can be saying things in an acceptable way but the ears that hear are not ready to hear. I wonder how many times we make that hearing never come or take a long time coming because we put out our knowledge in a foolish way.
For today, let’s begin to watch our words. Speak wisely and not just out of knowledge. They are not the same.