Those who listen to instruction will prosper; those who trust the Lord will be joyful (Proverbs 16:20, NLT).
A proverb, though seemingly brief, is a complex thought revealing God’s wisdom.
For this reason, at least once or twice a year, I have read the book of Proverbs over and over throughout the last 50 years. And I have concluded that Proverbs chapters 15 and 16 are the best chapters in this book of the Bible.
Why? I have a very personal (think unscientific and not too complex) test from which I arrived at this conclusion.
As I have read and re-read Proverbs, I’ve marked verses that speak to me, that are personal and relevant at the time of reading. Examining the book of Proverbs in my Bible recently, I noticed that I’ve marked more verses in Proverbs 15 and 16 than in the rest of the chapters of this book.
As I said, a simple test, not too scientific, but very meaningful and practical for me.
I read Proverbs 16:3 many years ago, and it has been a principle for my leadership as a pastor . . .
Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed (Proverbs 16:3, NLT).
Another foundational verse for my life and ministry . . .
He who gives attention to the word will find good, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord (Proverbs 16:20, NASB1995).
Whereas the Psalms are emotional, describing pain, joy, trial, and blessing; the Proverbs are cerebral, requiring thought and contemplation. I’ve considered the following proverbs for years . . .
Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisers bring success (Proverbs 15:22, NLT).
The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom, and humility comes before honor (Proverbs 15:33, ESV).
The book of Proverbs gives basic wisdom for building success in life and even victory through trials. When we read and know the Proverbs, we have a treasure chest of practical wisdom for living in peace with others . . .
A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare (Proverbs 15:1, NLT).
When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him (Proverbs 16:7, ESV).
Proverbs 15 and 16 challenge me to think and not take the easy path to finding wisdom. From Proverbs, I realize that when God’s will and ways are hidden, His path can be found through serious thought and prayer . . .
There is a path before each person that seems right, but it ends in death (Proverbs 16:25, NLT).
The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge, but the mouths of fools feed on folly (Proverbs 15:14, ESV).
One final verse from the best two chapters in Proverbs . . .
For the despondent, every day brings trouble; for the happy heart, life is a continual feast (Proverbs 15:15, NLT).
I want to be happy. We all do!
More than wealth or power, the Proverbs teach that happiness is success, and we find joy from the wisdom in the book of Proverbs . . .
Especially in chapters 15 and 16!
And one final, final verse – those who know me will understand why the following verse is one of my all-time favorites . . .
Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life (Proverbs 16:31, ESV).