Remove far from me falsehood and lying; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you and say, “Who is the Lord?” or lest I be poor and steal and profane the name of my God. Proverbs 30:8-9
Our workplaces are about two blocks from each other, so we often ride to work together. Sometimes we ride in comfortable silence, other times we’re being silly, and other times, like this morning, are interesting and enlightening. I read this verse, one I hadn’t read before, yesterday afternoon, and brought it up to J this morning.
I enjoy this aspect of our relationship, this external process of a topic, the bouncing back of ideas and perspectives. We learn so much from each other, from our conversations, from our experiences. It’s quite wonderful.
I was struck by many things when I read this verse, a main one being the author’s prayer: give me neither poverty nor riches, feed me with the food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you and say, “Who is the Lord?”
I hear in that a prayer, a plead for balance, for wisdom, for God to help because in our human state we do not know what is best. It is not only the wealthy who are tempted to make idols of possessions or status, it can also be an attitude of the poor. Both are extremes that have the potential to put the Christian in a place of discontentment, dissatisfaction, or a bad attitude. Think about it with me — the super wealthy person idolizes their status, finds comfort in their stuff or money, and may not keep their heart’s eye on the Lord… and the poor person idolizes the idea of being wealthy, is discouraged by comparison, weighed down by envy, and struggle to keep their focus on Jesus. Jesus, our only true source of satisfaction and contentment.
What a prayer: Lord, keep me from both of them.
Then you have, feed my with the food that is needful for me, lest I be full and deny you and say “Who is the Lord?”
There is so much in this world for us to absorb, so much for us to fill ourselves up with, but the author of this verse is saying, “Feed me only what is useful for sustaining me, and keep me from being so full that I don’t think about you.” Yes, Lord!
Our pastor talked about prayer yesterday, and he remarked how essential it is. “If you don’t recognize how much you need God, you won’t pray, you won’t ask Him for things, things he lovingly wants to be for you.”
Lord, graciously help us to be more mindful; don’t let us be so full of ‘food’ that won’t sustain, poverty, riches, self-sufficiency, pride, that we forget you.
— Have you read a new verse recently that refreshed you?