Confident of My Words & Actions

John Tilton

"My son, preserve sound judgment and discernment, do not let them out of your sight; they will be life for you, an ornament to grace your neck. Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble; when you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet. Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked, for the LORD will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being snared. (Proverbs 3:21-26)
Solomon reminds us that sound judgment and discernment is such an important character and practical attribute to strive for and garner. He goes on to encourage us that these attributes will precede us in terms of how people perceive us (to grace your neck). We then can feel comfort in what we have said, or how we have acted, confident to rest with our conscience and knowing that we've done all that God has asked us to do.
Ever wish you were able to turn the clock back so that in 20/20 hindsight you could have reworded what you said or reacted differently? Ever felt that your impulsive response did not represent your heart well?

Well, this is an area in my life that I often ponder as I truly care that I communicated or responded according to my beliefs and the person I should be in Christ. It is a desire to feel very confident in my words and actions so that I am at peace in how I've portrayed myself. I feel that in leadership, it is important as to how people perceive who I am and what my character, principles and beliefs are ... or simply put, my witness.

However, occasionally, my impulse of trying to be socially funny or witty, or feeling the necessity to respond to someone results in my wishing I could turn the clock back and reword what I said. There are times where stress or someone's actions can also cause my response or actions to be less then what and how I feel is a good witness.

Thus, Solomon's words are such an encouragement to me to make sound judgment and discernment a part of my internal processing mechanism. Perhaps taking the additional moment or time needed to process the situation at hand or my response, so that I may feel that I've represented Christ well (to grace my neck), that my words and actions would not bring conflict back to me (go on my way in safety) and that whether I am awake or at sleep, that my conscience will be at peace (my sleep will be sweet). Furthermore, that these attributes would result in a confidence that the Lord will always go before and protect me.
Lord, I know that as I've longed to represent my family and heritage well, and now as a believer and leader in ministry, my desire is to represent You in my life by what I say and do, these actions being a result of sound judgment and discernment. Therefore Lord, I pray that you will grant and bless me with sound judgment and discernment allowing me to speak words that will encourage, support and build up those I interact with. May I simply put, think before I speak. I also pray that my actions and character seen and experienced by others will also attest to your work in my life thereby enabling me to be a testament to the great God that you are.

Devotions for May 26

Proverbs 1,2,3
Romans 7

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