Unfriendly people care only about themselves; they lash out at common sense.
2 Fools have no interest in understanding; they only want to air their own opinions.
3 Doing wrong leads to disgrace, and scandalous behavior brings contempt.
4 Wise words are like deep waters; wisdom flows from the wise like a bubbling brook.
5 It is not right to acquit the guilty or deny justice to the innocent.
6 Fools’ words get them into constant quarrels; they are asking for a beating.
7 The mouths of fools are their ruin; they trap themselves with their lips.
8 Rumors are dainty morsels that sink deep into one’s heart.
9 A lazy person is as bad as someone who destroys things.
10 The name of the Lord is a strong fortress; the godly run to him and are safe.
11 The rich think of their wealth as a strong defense; they imagine it to be a high wall of safety.
12 Haughtiness goes before destruction; humility precedes honor.
13 Spouting off before listening to the facts is both shameful and foolish.
14 The human spirit can endure a sick body, but who can bear a crushed spirit?
15 Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open for knowledge.
16 Giving a gift can open doors; it gives access to important people!
17 The first to speak in court sounds right— until the cross-examination begins.
18 Flipping a coin can end arguments; it settles disputes between powerful opponents.
19 An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.
20 Wise words satisfy like a good meal; the right words bring satisfaction.
21 The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.
22 The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord.
23 The poor plead for mercy; the rich answer with insults.
24 There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.
Yesterday, on the 18th day of May, Doug and I celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary. Mid morning, as we sat on the back deck, sipping our cups of coffee, Doug read Proverbs 18 aloud. I began to chuckle as I recalled the years we’ve spent together and how Solomon’s words of wisdom so aptly applied to our lives….
During the first five or so years of our marriage, we were both unfriendly people. Our constant quarreling proved we cared only about ourselves. I, for one, aired my opinion much to frequently and my mouth was my ruin on many occasions. I had absolutely NO interest in understanding my husband – or my God.
Through the years we’ve since learned how hard it is to win back one another’s trust and affection after an offense. We’ve realized that wise words, spoken at the right time, can satisfy the soul. We’ve also discovered that God honors humility and it is the key to resolution and restoration in a relationship.
In the two decades we’ve known one another, we’ve experienced joy and grief, happiness and despair, life and death….but the greatest experiences we’ve known are the ones in which we have seen and felt the presence of God. For without Him, there would be no marriage. Without Him, there would be no love. Without Him, there would be no possible way for one man and one woman to become one flesh after living together for 18 years!
Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.