Proverbs 20 Devotional
By Pastor Lawrence
There are two things pointed out about us personally in this chapter that the Lord knows very well but of which we have very little understanding and to which we pay even less attention: our heart and our steps.
In verse five, Solomon says: “The purpose in a man’s heart is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out.” It’s not like we’re animals acting solely upon mere instinct and natural impulses; for every action we take and every word we speak, we are choosing between a wide variety of options to obtain an outcome that seems favorable to us. The question is: what is it that we really want? And what purpose are we really pursuing? We don’t often reflect upon our motivations, our inclinations, and our reasons for doing this or that, but God does. And these matters of the heart are very important to him, for they reflect either a heart full of love for God and neighbor or something else entirely.
Another aspect of our lives that we don’t fully understand is the outcome of our actions and decisions. In verse twenty-four Solomon says: “A man’s steps are from the Lord; how then can man understand his way?” Even though we seek to plan out our steps and our days, we can’t guarantee any of our desired outcomes. For instance, we can eat right and exercise daily yet still die early from cancer. Likewise, we can be frugal with our spending and save a ton of money only to lose it all in a lawsuit or in medical bills. We truly don’t know what even this day will hold for us, but God does.
Therefore, it behooves us to go to the Lord in prayer each day both to open our hearts to Him as well as to submit our steps to Him before and after taking them. Knowing that our hearts can still give in to wickedness and that our steps are still susceptible to vanity should motivate us all the more to seek the mind of Christ and study His word to guide us on the right path.